What do I see when I see two sides at war?
I see the middle of it all. I see the hurt of both parties, and though I tend to take the side of whoever seems to have the most rational argument (according to my perspective) I can’t help but feel just…sadness. Absolute frustration, powerlessness and sadness.
I’m thinking specifically of this war that’s been raging in the U.S of late, both in terms of the political polarities tearing a hole in America, and in terms of the vastly differing socio-economic backgrounds and belief systems shaken up by the divided states of covid.
I’ve just come away from watching a video of the storming of the Capitol building. The video was clearly put together to support an agenda: a ‘Trump is horrible, and we are going to prove it by carefully constructing a highlight reel of the most shocking, heart-breaking scenes from the day.’ It worked. The video was shocking in its portrayal of Trump and his many loyal followers.
And yet, regardless of how well the video was crafted to sway public opinion to one particular side, there is no denying what happened that day was truly real. No denying the violence. No denying that this sort of primal aggression no longer belongs on the human stage: we’re not cavemen, anymore. Still, our primal instincts remain. How to healthily and peacefully honour them is a mystery yet to be solved by humanity, it seems.
As I watched the riot exploding all about the place, I took a side. I knew that I was taking a side, because I was thinking, ‘ How could they do this? This is so horrible. These people must be (insert judgment here.)’
But then it happened again. That thing that happens to me when I see an absolute wrong, and I ask myself more questions. But why are so many people screaming the same story, and how can so many people be wrong about what they believe? And how bad must their oppression have become for them to be behaving in such a dramatically inappropriate way?
It saddens me. All of it.
How on earth does a species overcome such drastically wide gaps in views and belief systems? How does a species become one harmonised species, rather than fifty billion tiny fragments of confusion, hatred and blame?
I don’t know.
So, I’m a little…I’m not sure what I am. I’m not sure frightened is the right word, and yet frightened really does seem to be the only word I can come up with in the face of all of this fight.
I do not condone the horrible horribleness (excuse my delightful eloquence, here) that occurred at the Capitol building that day, nor do I condone the hatred and inequality perpetuated by humanity, still. Oh my goodness, still. But what is there to do?
I don’t know what to do but surrender into the bleakness and just…hope. Hope that we can sort our stuff out before things get ever so much worse. Hope that humanity can find love and compassion, even in the face of absolute horror and ridiculousness.
Hope that one day there will be peace.
Because all I’ve ever wanted was peace.
All I’ve ever wanted was peace.