In light of the terrible tragedy on Sunday in Orlando Florida, I don’t feel comfortable posting my regularly scheduled blog post today.

I don’t want to talk about home decor, cute outfits, or the summer’s biggest trends. 

I don’t want to talk about feminine style, relationship advice, or how to get the biggest shopping bang for your buck.

I do however want to talk about beauty. 

To me, true beauty is the ability to empathize with the plight of a stranger you will never meet.

To cry for the loss of a life you never knew.

To mourn the existence of a soul the world will never know again. 

On Sunday Morning, we needlessly lost 49 innocent lives and forever changed the course of dozens more.

Each one of these lives was someone’s friend, someone’s family, and, as all of us are, a soul that had the potential to touch the world.

It’s so easy, to watch as these hateful and debilitating slaughters happen again and again and feel as though we as individuals have no means to fight back and are therefore powerless against these aggressors, but in truth we do have a tool that we can use that is more powerful than any weapon can ever be.

We have beauty.

♥ Emma Rae Thomas + The Pretty As Pie Team

That same inner-beauty that fuels that very heartbreak and compassion you feel right now for these poor lost lives can inspire you to strive to change the path for the living. 

It’s so easy to become enthralled with the latest explosion of hate that we forget to examine the circumstances that fueled the fire in the first place.

No person is born with hate.

Hate is a learned behavior and whether it is learned casually through the preferences of one’s parent’s and community, or is intentionally taught as a mission, religion or purpose, its outcome is the same.

When you pretend you don’t hear that racist joke your cousin made at the family picnic, or ignore those teenage boys referring to each other using homophobic slurs YOU are normalizing that hate. 

You are co-signing on that person’s behavior and are implying to those around you (especially children) that you agree with whatever is being said or done.  

Every demeaning word that is cast about the number of a woman’s sexual partners, every racial slur uttered in the privacy of one’s own home, every child who goes unreprimanded for saying “that’s gay” in reference to something that isn’t good, is contributing to the foundation of hate that these tragic crimes are built upon. 

Don’t let those souls who were gunned down in the prime of their lives during this and every other hate fueled tragedy go without purpose. 

Let this be the reason the world starts to change to let us all live the truly beautiful lives we are capable of.