Paris and Everywhere 


My heart goes out to all who have been affected by the tragic events in Paris yesterday and in Lebanon earlier in the week. Really, my heart goes out to everyone, ever, who has been a victim of senseless violence. And that’s what violence almost always is — senseless. (I won’t try to figure out when it might make sense — maybe never.)

A reminder from two Kings (and perhaps you know a third):

Stephen King (from his Facebook page):

“Hating all Muslims for what happened in Paris is like hating all Christians because of the gay-hating Westboro Baptist Church.”

Martin Luther King Jr.:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

It seems so clear, at times, that violence begets violence.

This is a different kind of battle. I don’t think a war of guns will win this. The “war” must target the idea of violence as a means to worship. There are probably no peace treaties to sign that will ensure an end to this kind of violence. And (if we wanted to) there is no way to kill or wipe out all of those who would enact violence. So where does that leave us?

It leaves us with education, words, communication, intelligence, knowledge, a special kind of compassion … The very hallmarks of civilization itself. This does not mean we should be weak. These things take strength. It takes strength to get the word out to those who would join terrorists: there is no glory in those violent acts. It leaves behind sadness.

Prayers to all who need them.

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