A thousand years ago I was a kid who played catcher for one season. I was good at it. I didn’t have any problem giving the pitcher a target to throw the ball at and I was never afraid to block homeplate. I liked playing catcher and gladly wore my tools of ignorance with pride.
Today when I think of tools of ignorance the phrase carries a different meaning for me. In the context of social media it makes me think of people who use blogs, Facebook and Twitter to promote and promulgate hate. It makes me think of people who engage in knee jerk responses to things that they know little to nothing about. It makes me think of those who jump on the bandwagon and sign petitions without regard or concern for the consequences of their actions.
Too much time enclosed in cyberbubble wrap makes us forget that there are real people dealing with the consequences of actions…our actions. I read posts and comments in which people cheer for the brutal deaths of innocents whose politics they disagree with and I wonder if they have ever seen what bombs and bullets do to bodies. I wonder if they understand cause and effect. I wonder if they would feel the same if their children, wives, siblings, husbands and friends were victims of these attacks.
Don’t misunderstand- I am not a pacifist. I think that thereÂ are just wars. I believe that sometimes the only way to bring diplomacy is to open the gates of hell and unleash the hounds against the other side. But I don’t forget that there are innocents on the other side. I don’t forget that even those we fight sometimes cry over their loved ones. But the sick and twisted part of life requires that sometimes we make choices that are harsh and uncomfortable.
Don’t try to play games with me and say things like one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter because those that fight for freedom don’t butcher children in the dead of night. And those that support the butchers, that hand out candy in celebration of murder do nothing but harden hearts and make it clear that peace isÂ a pipe dream.
Sometimes the thing that makes me saddest is knowing that my children will continue to learn that though the world is filled with beauty there is such ugliness. No matter what I do the time will come where their innocence will be shredded and I’ll be forced to try and explain the unexplainable. Fortunately there is more beauty and hope than not.