Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Chip Away - "Out in the Silence"

Anyone who has faced injustice, especially repeated injustice, knows how difficult it is NOT to wear a chip on your shoulder. Bitterness and fear are strong emotions. They are ugly emotions which cause us to pre-judge. Then it's a vicious cycle of self fulfilling prophesies.
How do we get past that?
I watched Joe Wilson and Dean Hamer's documentary, "Out in the Silence" for the second time last night, at Pitt Titusville. I have deep respect for these two and the work they are doing. The greatest message is one of hope. Hope is the answer to overcoming bitterness and fear.
There are times our hope is misplaced. There are those, like Diane Gramley of the AFA, whose lies and beliefs are so entrench that they cannot work toward solutions. Confrontation only energizes them. They become more entrenched and spin bigger lies. Their objective is solely to silence their "enemy". There is little hope that they will rationally seek solutions.
How do we get past that?
We realized they are not part of our hope for progress. We carefully, patiently and rationally expose their lies. We open dialogues with good people who are willing and able to understand. We place our hope in telling the truth as often as we can to as many as we can. We have to maintain a healthy level of optimism that the truth will ultimately be accepted. Otherwise, all the person sees is the big chip on your shoulder.
Finally, there must be legislative and legal protection. Without it, hope wears thin. Injustice cannot be allowed to thrive.
Overlook it - it will grow.

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