It is a world where most of us are developing an immunity to man’s inhumanity; an exercise born of simple self-preservation. The internet has brought us news and video of horrors not even contemplated by Steven King in his most horrible imaginings. These terrors, these atrocities stream into our brains through phones, tablets and computer monitors 24/7. No human being with any measurable intelligence cannot be negatively touched by the knowledge that some are capable of living while being so bereft of humanity, so lacking in what makes us a sentient species. We shut down; we build walls of immunity. Until something like Peshawar occurs and our walls are summarily ripped down by shared grief and disbelief.
I waited before blogging about this new atrocity – the attack on the children and staff of a school in Peshawar. While millions of parents, in the Western world, worry about their children as they walk through their hallowed doors of education; the worries are beyond mundane in comparison to the terror that must be felt in Pakistan today. Western parents worry their sweet things may be bullied or gods forbid, exposed to peanut butter meanwhile in Pakistan, parents worry their children may be torn to pieces by automatic gunfire. Blown to bits by a Taliban suicide bomber. Or the parents of teachers, worrying that their son or daughter may be set on fire as they try to offer children a chance at better lives.
This new depth of depravity by a group that thrives in the dank depths of perversions should and has enraged the world. They are cowards, the Taliban. Little men with dreams of grandeur. Lusting for power over the powerless. How best to keep a people subjugated than through the ignorance of a lack of education? Of course they will attack schools, murder children. The biggest enemy of the Taliban, of the Boko Haram, Al Qaeda is education. When the masses have the opportunity to learn, to reason and to understand right from wrong, the power of these groups erodes. They are left with nothing but poison and soon turn on each other, like the scavengers they are.
But offering education must be exercised here, in the West as well, in order to cure ourselves of the poison of prejudice. We need to understand, we need to learn that Taliban, Boko Haram and the appalling Al Qaeda are not, and will never be representative of all of Islam. No more so than Jim Jones, Joseph Ratzinger or Pat Robertson are representative of all Christians. Bigots haul out controversial passages of the Q’aran as justification for the demonization of all Muslims, willfully ignoring the beauty and the peaceful verse. Why? Because they are ignorant of the wonder that can be found in this book. They have latched on to media poison and rather than use the rationale, the opportunity to learn, they grab the sensational and call it truth. Often, these people label themselves “Christians”. The bible, this book that they use as their “end all, be all” of what is right is fraught with horror, with incest, with murder, with degradation and hate, all of which is ignored by convenience. The same method used by Taliban and the rest of the would-be tyrants of the world.
We all need education to fight these people. We need to offer our children the chance to grab at a better future. Throw out the Shakespeare and the archaic methods of the current education system; teach morality, teach ethics, teach humanity and for the love of this earth, teach them how not to hate.
That’s how the hyenas in human form will be defeated; expose their lies to the light of truth through learning, through rationale, through education. Light the way and leave these carrion eaters to wallow in their own filth until they drown or see until they see the light and learn what it is to be a truly faithful human being.