The media outlets have exhausted terror stories so much that instead of us being worried about what could potentially harm us, we have come to a point where we either shrug our shoulders or change the channel to a new crime story.
We keep seeing the efforts to get rid of crimes, allegedly, we are decades into this war, yet it just seems to worsen. Why? Because we keep cutting the leaves, but we never uproot the tree.
People Are Just Vessels
It may be a shock, but terrorism does not exist. It is just an ideology embodied in people. And if nobody would accept it into their belief system, it would continue to be abstract and never manifest anywhere.
Maybe some would agree that the first response to any threat is to shun it using force. Hence, we declare war here and there. And the measurement of winning is dependent on the number of lives lost or the size of a country’s weaponry. It is odd to see that to gain peace; we course through war.
If we look anywhere, it seems that we deem killing anarchists as the answer to suppress the insurgency. What we do not fully understand is that when we do this, we incite rage and rebellion among these terrorists’ connections. This leads to all of us, including those in the Peace Corps, to breed a population of angry individuals that could eventually turn to a new generation of extremists fueled by revenge.
If we keep focusing on the moot act that is killing each other, we are just creating a cycle of war. After some time, we would just be left with statistics of dead people. If we want terrorism to cease, we need to look at the issue in depth.
Terrorism is an ideology; thus, to end it, we need not destroy the vessel physically, but we need to counter a belief system.
A War of Principles, Not Arms
This is because our belief system is the main dictator of our behavior. Regardless of the amount of violence directed towards us, if we have strong principles against hurting each other, we would never fight back and adhere to peace as long as possible.
Given this, we should look at the potential of education as the answer to this problem. We need to develop a kind of education that inculcates morals among children instead of valuing standardized tests.
We need to cultivate a culture of “mind for others” so we become considerate and make everything easy for everyone.
We need to defend ourselves against a threat, that is normal, but should we capture perpetrators of crime, let us transform them to become functional citizens by rehabilitation?
We know that terrorism is performed on a large scale today, so instead of just focusing on destroying the already large upheaval against governments, how about we also start looking into mitigating the development of extremist behavior and ideology among children?
We have the power to change how people think through education and when we tap into their mindsets, a growth and developmental perspective would be passed on naturally to parents and children. Moreover, if we get to do that well, we would learn acceptance of diversity and respect for others. When that finally happens, war would be dispensable; especially when you analyze it further, the root of all these cataclysms is oppression of things we cannot accept and understand.
This is the time we recognize that sustainable peace cannot be attained through physical battle, rather, it can champion through engagement of principles.
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