While every day is a good day to speak out against violence, it seems especially important to do so today as part of remembering and honoring Martin Luther King Jr.
As we all struggle to come to terms with and heal from the vicarious traumatization of the shootings in Tucson, I find the following words of his particularly apt. It is almost as if he is speaking to this recent tragedy. Let us all remember that returning violence and hate with more of the same just plain gives us more of the same. There is an alternative. We can all learn to live the alternative: love; love of ourselves and each other.
The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral,
begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy.
Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it.
Through violence you may murder the liar,
but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth.
Through violence you may murder the hater,
but you do not murder hate.
In fact, violence merely increases hate.
So it goes.
Returning violence for violence multiplies violence,
adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness:
only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.