Saturday, April 6, 2013

A Foreign Body in a Foreign Mind

I very much believe the farther out in space you go, the more alike we all look down here on the big, blue marble. As a prep school dweeb, I remember admiring immensely the celebration of shared humanity that William Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice represented with Shylock's soliloquy.

When I learned King Edward I, centuries before Shakespeare, had banned the practice of  Judaism and expelled all Jews from Great Britain, I was struck by how universal feelings truly are that The Bard could capture so eloquently emotions he could only imagine.

We are a species, to my taste, who too often argues over our differences instead of celebrating together our similarities. We, or at least I, often recoil and withdraw from the unfamiliar and less than known, as a means of coping and surviving even when there's no reason or need for that behavior.

I subscribe for the most part to 'get along by going along' and if that means saying or writing something in public and only in private taking a behavior or a decision, I'm usually that guy. I'm aware that 'some people have to be shamed into doing the right thing' and on occasion even practice it but only as a last resort. A hardening of the heart when this approach is used often does more harm than good.

And if that smelled a bit like a disclaimer, you're right, because it is. Here's why.

Now that you've read it, tell me what you think we (all of us) should do and I'll help because I see no other course in light of the totality of the approach and imposition of what can only be seen as torture in a case of state-sponsored revenge instead of justice. How can you be anything other than beyond numb. I know it's only water, but a river of tears will not wash away the sin of our own unthinking and unbending inhumanity towards one another.
-bill kenny

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