MERRY CHRISTMAS 2016!
If ever there was a time to wish for world peace it is now. Always at Christmas there is the call for peace on earth and good will toward men. Too bad so many have so much bad will.
But it is the way of humanity. We fight over finite resources and power over those resources and power over each other, kind of connected to who gets the resources.
There were two major world wars last century and since then wars have gotten somewhat smaller in scale but oh so deadly still. And we use up so much of those resources fighting over who gets the resources.
But we also fight over what religion to believe in or what kind of people, of what race, should be in charge, but all that really gets back to who gets the resources.
With the spread of Western-style democracy at the end of World War II it had seemed we had turned a corner on the road to world peace. Then there was the Cold War between the forces of democracy and the forces of communist tyranny (communism, some weird form of socialism that always amounts to a dictatorship that provides no more freedom than a fascist government, even though it is supposedly on the other end of the right/left political spectrum).
But the Cold War ended with the fall of the Soviet Union, which collapsed under the weight of an arms race and militarism it could not afford with its unworkable economy that could not respond to what its populace wanted or needed.
But lest we get too smug here in the West, others in the world want their share, and did not grow up in the same culture and did not have the same opportunities as we have had in some cases.
Some see how we have it and choose to emulate it, even choose to come here and join it. In fact, that was part of the downfall of the Soviet Union or more directly the old Soviet bloc of the Eastern European satellite nations forced to be under Soviet domination after World War II by the Russian army that passed through them to defeat the Nazis of Hitler’s Germany who had invaded Russia. After decades of the forced drab life under communism, thanks to modern communications slipping in, the people of Eastern Europe saw how the other half lived and wanted that too.
But then there are the opportunists, greedy people who use the ignorance and needs of others to preach hate and rally them to their side not to help humanity but to secure power for themselves. And they enlist the support of others with the promise of some greater glory either here on earth or in the after life. Desperate and confused people do strange things, such as wage wars of terror.
And, it goes the other way. Opportunists in the West and outright bigots alike stoke the fears of the populace and preach hate against immigrants or even people who remain in other parts of the world but who are not directly aligned with us in the name of fighting terror.
(I do not mean to say nor imply there is not reason to fear terrorists or even those who would destroy our own culture. We just have to correctly identify the enemy and not ruin what we have in the process.)
It’s kind of an endless cycle.
But every year at this time we talk of peace on earth. In some wars, such as America’s Civil War and World War II, in some cases soldiers on either side stopped shooting each other on Christmas (I’ve read in the Civil War they even exchanged needed items), only to resume fighting once the day of peace was over.
But I do wish those in power would talk more of peace than war and would talk more of cooperation than of divisions in society. Of course there will always likely be battles to fight, but more talk of peace and less vitriol might lessen the amount of violence.
But actual pacifism in words and/or deeds encourages the forces of evil.
You gotta talk nice but be ready to beat back the enemy at the gates and let the enemy know of your readiness.
Peace On Earth and good will to all!
The violence in neighborhoods and streets across the nation to me is just another facet of the fight over resources. Some want to get them the easy way, some want to work for them, some want a chance to work for them, some are just frustrated, and some are just confused over the mixed messages of society — and then there is always evil.