by Joe Scarry
|Rainbow peace sign flag
Yesterday was the UN International Day of Peace.
The day nudged me to think about what — if anything — I feel I really know about peace and the movement for peace.
Here are 10 things that are true for me . . . .
(1) Nuclear abolition
The risk from nuclear weapons is so great, the only responsible course is total elimination now.
(2) Getting with the times
The means available to us today for eliminating war vary greatly from those available from those working to eliminate war in decades past.
(3) Social media power
One means that can be the source of enormous power is social media.
We face a whole lot of obstacles to peace and justice. To be a peace activist means committing to work on multiple fronts.
(5) Grounding oneself
Where do people find the grounding to sustain their work for peace?
For many people, grounding is found in community and/or faith.
(6) The centrality of nonviolence
Eventually, it becomes clear that “nonviolence” is not just an aspect of style, and somehow optional, but is, in fact, a central source of the essential power needed by anyone working for peace.
(7) A challenge to the Church
How much attention should Christians give to the work of actually opposing war?
To me it seems clear that Jesus’ “good news” is a subversive, anti-imperialist, anti-establishment, anti-status quo call to action.
(8) Peace work
Peace is a system, and we should approach it as something to work at.
Peace work requires resources: hours, money, skills.
(See A Global Security System: An Alternative to War from World Beyond War.)
The main characteristic of war has become its persistence. Why?
(10) Go ahead, say “never”
One of the best things we could do is get out of the “little bit of war” habit. Saying “no” is the first step to finding alternatives to war.
What’s true for you?