Wednesday, August 02, 2006
You know PEOPLE are dying, right?
I am sick of myself and this blog today.
What's happening in the world is so frightening and disturbing that it seems trite for me to chime in with my own two cents about the bloodshed over faith, money and power.
Regardless of what your own views may be regarding Israel and Lebanon, or whether you're for or against the war in Iraq, we are all casualties of these escalating conflicts. I understand the concept of loyalty and the idea that we have to honor the sacrifice of the young men and women who are fighting our country's battles for us. At the same time, nationalism perverts loyalty and instead of us mourning human pain and loss, we're quick to mitigate the pain of our "enemies" we celebrate burning cities and talk about daily death tolls with less vigor than we would the day's winning lotto numbers.
Case in point, Ann Coulter's take on the war in Lebanon: "Some have argued that Israel's response is disproportionate, which is actually correct: It wasn't nearly strong enough. I know this because there are parts of South Lebanon still standing." This from a "Christian" -- guess the Christian population of Lebanon won't be affected at all once their country is finally leveled.
Then there are recent reports that the massacre at Qana, where women and children were said to be killed during an Israeli air strike are fabricated. Michelle Malkin and other conservative bloggers are calling the Qana deaths a hoax and say that it's just a stunt for the world press mounted by Hezbollah. The argument goes that unfortunately, women and children die in war and Israel has known death forever. True and true. Coulter, Malkin and Schlussel can all clink martinis (or Pabst, most likely) over their glib assessment of world events while real women, do-or-die women on both our armed forces and on the enemy's side do the dirty work of killing each other.
It's so easy, criminally easy, for us bloggers to just rant and opine on issues that mean life and death for so many defenseless people. Yes, the West is under attack, but at the same time war has been a way of life for so many people for far too long -- why do we need a flag to guide our emotions? Why can't we fight for understanding and reasoning? Where are all these deaths going to take us?
A very good friend sent me the following message from his Kaballah group. Now, I'm not endorsing any religion, I'm just saying that this particular message makes sense and is worth considering (hat tip Steve for this):
"Until we learn to cry tears for others only, nothing will change.The teachings and tools of Kabbalah help us eradicate and destroy the self-centered aspect of our being that only allows us to cry for ourselves, both individually and as a particular people of specific faith. When we remove that destructive selfish part, we will have the ability to cry over the pain of our individual neighbors and other nations. With everyone concerned for one another, the hatred and conflict will cease. Paradise will be ours forever. But no one gets it. The result? Wars and bloodshed for 2000 years."
Hard to argue with that, isn't it?
I'm not my usual combative self today. Instead, I'm going to wish for peace. Peace for you, peace for your families and mine, and peace for the men and women and children who are fighting the battles that so many of us talk about from the comfort of our homes and offices and favorite restaurants.
I wish for you, and for myself, love and light.