The recent terrorist attacks in Paris, France were horrific, yet until the West sits down and does some serious soul searching, attacks like this are going to continue to occur.   All life matters, not just those in the well-off West.

There is hypocrisy that must first be dealt with.  Suddenly I see pictures of French flags with people saying Je Suis Paris as if people in Western countries can only be deserving of our sympathy.  Just one day prior there was a terrorist in Beruit, Lebanon, yet nobody was changing their Facebook profile picture to the Lebanese flag.  How about changing your picture to a Syrian flag, as the West has used the exact same terrorists who committed the Paris attacks to attempt a forced regime change in the name of “democracy and human rights,” a contradiction in terms if I have ever seen one.  What about the countless Iraqi, Afghani, Yemini, Palestinian, etc, etc, lives who have been lost as a direct result of Western interventions, where survivors have to deal with hell on a daily occurrence.   In the case of Afghanistan, it is rapidly approaching 40 years of misery.

Then there’s “collateral damage.”  What should be considered as terrorist attacks are brushed aside by far too many because “wrong place, wrong time, human shields, and they might secretly be terrorists.”  As the Reverend Jeremiah Wright put it after the September 11 attacks “kids playing in the playground, mothers picking up children after school, civilians not soldiers, people just trying to make it day by day.”  Imperial terrorism inevitably leads to terrorism against civilians of The Empire.  Both are inexcusable, yet we are told that only “they commit terrorism.”  Violence only leads to more violence.  Hatred and bigotry only leads to more hatred and bigotry.  Terrorism by one group breeds terrorism by another.  The vicious cycle continues, unabated, and far too many fail to even bat an eye as fellow humans slaughter each other, endlessly.

Yet there is hope, we have the power to stop all this senseless violence.  The mindset is simple: all life matters.  It does not matter if it is born or unborn, their place of origin, exactly who they pray to if at all, their life matters as does yours.  Instead of calls to militarism, how about we stop, think about violence actually accomplishes, remember to “love they neighbor” no matter how mad you are at them and most certainly do not take that anger out on people who had absolutely nothing to do with any sort of “terrorism.”

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Dominic Schmid
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