When politics should take a back seat to reality…

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 10.39.01 PMHow can we pretend that what is going on isn’t going on?

Terrorist attacks every week – more than 950 since New Year’s Day.

Rampant hatred.

Madness so severe that it would lead a man to drive a truck down a crowded street, murdering 84 people as they celebrated Bastille Day in Nice, France.

The United States is at DEFCON 3, and we aren’t paying attention. The world is at DEFCON 2, and we’re doing other things.

You know what DEFCON means. You’ve heard of the U.S. military’s defense readiness condition that ranks alert levels based on how much danger we face. It ranges from DEFCON 5 at its lowest to DEFCON 1 at its highest. I first heard it while watching “War Games” with a young Matthew Broderick saving the world from a playful computer.

But this isn’t a movie.

And we’re not paying attention to the reality unfolding before our eyes.

Has World War III already begun while we conduct business as usual?

As politicians in countries around the world, including here, fight for power, hatred is rising rapidly. Rather than pay attention, we are making our way as if the globe were not in crisis.

If there ever was a time that politics should take a back seat to our need to fight for our world – together – it is now.

ROCHELLE RILEY’s essays on this blog are personal. No reprints without permission. You can read her columns at www.freep.com/rochelleriley and follow her on Twitter @rochelleriley.