I never met my great-grandparents, because they were murdered.

armenian-genocide-1915


During the genocide of World War I, the State of Turkey targeted Christians, which included my people, the Armenians, to be exterminated.  The State murdered men, women, and children, without judgment or differentiation.  They were hung, decapitated, or marched to death. The estimate of those murdered are 1.5 million people.

The Turks who were responsible for these murders were fascists. Fascists are people who control through authoritarianism that appeals to national pride and protectionism. Fascists are led by an unelected leader (dictator) who uses force to eliminate dissent and free speech and other freedoms.

Today my great-grandparents lay in their unmarked graves, wherever those graves may be.  And if they have souls, I imagine they’re watching our definition of fascism today.  And they’re wondering what has become of the world…

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You help create the environment that you live in

together


“We have no reason to distrust our world, for it is not against us. If it has terrors, they are our terrors. If it has an abyss, it is ours. If dangers are there, we must try to love them. And if we would live with faith in the value of what is challenging, then what now appears to us as most alien will become our truest, most trustworthy friend…Perhaps every terror is, in its deepest essence, something that needs our recognition or help.”

Finding differences between groups based on a few examples we see online or on TV exaggerates the superficial differences between all us human beings. But we are not different.

There is no us and them.

There are challenges for some people which can be too much to handle. These people cannot help develop bias and attitude because of their experiences. Whether a black person unjustly questioned and searched on the streets, or the officer on the streets being disrespected for being a cop.

These challenges are important to address, but they should not develop into lines drawn in the sand, divisions between people or races. Assuming negative of one group is just as bad as assuming negative of the other.

We help create the environment that we live in.  Any true divisions between us are faint.  We must be vigilant in not generalizing, catastrophizing, or amplifying those small differences, as much as these differences seem to stand out.

There is no us and them.

Don’t become a victim of the environment.