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Year of Nonviolence or Nonexistence--John Dear

by John K. Stoner  (January 9, 2018)

The Rev. John Dear, a consistent and courageous peacemaker, wrote recently in Common Dreams

“Sadly, in the same way that warnings of climate change have mostly been dismissed for decades, Dr. King’s stark framing of the pivotal choice before us—nonviolence or nonexistence—was steadfastly ignored over the past half-century as the United States lurched from another seven years of the Vietnam War to decades of war in Central America, Iraq, Afghanistan, and many other places, even as the violence of racial injustice, economic inequality, environmental destruction, nuclear proliferation, gun deaths, armed drones, and many other forms of violence spiraled out of control." 

Today I introduce you to, or remind you of, John Dear and his call to active nonviolence as the road to peace and justice, rather than war and superior violence as the road to peace and justice, as advocated by the American empire.  

There is a clear choice between these two ideas of how to make the world a better place.  Nonviolence or nonexistence, as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. framed the choice at the Riverside Church in New York in 1967, is the stark choice which faces us more dramatically in 2018 than ever before.  

Dear goes on to say, "Indeed, over these decades we have consistently opted for violence even as we have shunned the word “nonviolence,” as if it were the most dangerous word in the English language" (full article).

I invite you to read Dear's article, and to make a commitment in 2018 to act on the truths he and Martin Luther King have set before us.

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