A Civil Peace

Here’s the thing about high ideals. They require a lot of step-by-step on the ground work. So just when you’re thinking about buying the champagne and Peace bunting you realize that you have to be making Peace in your local community… and helping them to become Peace makers.

It’s one of the reasons we need to team up on this journey, because some of us work well at blue sky levels, some of us work better on the ground… and then of course there are those who work in between and some who just like to work behind the scenes, they’re all necessary.

But just as the Sandy Hook tragedy underlined the necessity but also the opportunity of working together, this spate of violent gang rapes while teens stand idly by and then text horrific pics and threats offers us the necessity and the opportunity to talk about public responsibility and public discourse. We’d all better take the opportunity. This isn’t a case of those kids over there. This is all of us. We’ve failed those kids. All the “don’t make them come along, sit at the table, participate in group activities” leniency we’ve offered our children has taught them they don’t need to participate. Technology is both an incredible opportunity for widening our world and a removal from first person experience.

I’m not sure what the answers are, but I do know we’re the folks to work on this. We need to relearn and to teach the arts of civil discourse and engagement. Life is a conversation in which there are exchanges and silences. If it’s about violence and threats and disinterest, that’s our work to repair. We need to look in the mirror and indulge in some moments of self-reflection. We need to be stepping up to the challenges, because our children need us. We need to be working on the Peace Conversation.


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