Josh Brolin pens thoughtful response to Pittsburgh synagogue shooting: 'We are so self-absorbed, so self righteous'


The country is still processing the horrific loss of life in Pittsburgh, Pa., where 11 people were shot and killed during Saturday morning Shabbat services at Tree of Life synagogue.

Social media quickly became a hub of thoughts and prayers, including those of actor Josh Brolin, who penned a thoughtful paragraph on Instagram as he read the names of the victims. The deceased ranged in age from 54 (Cecil Rosenthal, a developmentally disabled man whose brother was also murdered at the scene) to 97 (Rose Mallinger, a Holocaust survivor).

"Something happens when you say the names and ages aloud," Brolin wrote. "Albeit, it is Sunday, and we mostly sit in our homes feeling relatively safe, but with a new creeping pang in our realities that someone may be coming just around the corner to end our lives or the lives of the ones most dear to us."

He continued, "We are so self-absorbed, so self righteous that we have started to forget what it means to be of service to others, and how much that feeds our sense of self."

Photos: Pittsburghers respond to mass shooting at Tree of Life synagogue

The violence "isn't a conspiracy," Brolin said, adding, "We know something is foundationally wrong."

Brolin then proposed a solution that every individual person can take to heart: "All we need is to demand of ourselves to be of service to someone for something every single day just for the sheer pleasure of anything positive it might bring them."

Brolin's stepmother, Barbra Streisand, had a simple response, which she posted in the comments: "Thank you Josh."

The message also resonated with fans, many of whom had their own emotional responses to the tragedy.

"The things that woman has seen and been through, two world wars, countless emotions, countless moments," one wrote of the oldest victim. "She deserved to live the rest of her days with grandchildren and love and peace, yet she was murdered in a place of worship and prayer."