What We Can Learn from the Latest Stampede in Shanghai?

Holiday season is supposed to be full of love, smile, and happiness. We are very not willing to witness or undergo anything distressing or awful during this time; otherwise it will be extremely sad. The recent scary stampede happened in Shanghai really shocked the world and make us heartbroken, because at least 36 people were killed and 47 injured during New Year’s Eve celebration at the famous Bund, the riverside area where tens of thousands had gathered.

Actually, I was also around the Bund that night, but I was just celebrating it with my friends at a hotel nearby, and didn’t go out to watch the midnight light show, which is the main reason for this large-scale gathering.

When I woke up the next morning, I learned the news about the stampede from my Wechat moments posted by some friends, it was truly shocking and unbelievable. At that moment, what came to mind was that I felt lucky for myself and my friends because we were so close to the accident and possible death. But in the meantime, I felt sad for those who lost their lives in this stampede, especially for those young people around my age. Later that day, I got many messages and calls from my friends to check if I was safe. I felt very touched and appreciative.

For people who lost their relatives and friends in this stampede, I can imagine how  they must be feeling helpless and in despair right now, and I’m sure such sadness will last for a long time. But we are not able to change the reality, and it’s also meaningless to blame anyone, either the general public or the government. I think what’s more important is that we should learn from this hard lesson and sharp warning that life gave us. Undoubtedly, the future public activities in the city should be more organized, and the government should be more thoughtful and responsible for the public. And for every of us, we definitely should improve our safety awareness, and keep a more rational mind. It doesn’t mean we should limit our social activity participation, but we can participate in a more private, controllable, and safe way with the same amount of fun. We know life is unpredictable and inconsistent, but if we can keep a clear mind, accept what we can’t change and adjust to changes over time, we can still enjoy what life has to offer us.

Lee Zhang, Shanghai

Lee Zhang

You can contact Li Zhang at zhangli0828@hotmail.com.