They call it a grassroots movement. These are movements that start small, like one person small, with a small core group, like maybe 12 people.
I am sure you guessed. That small group and their leader founded one of the three major religions of the world. Social and political movements start also start with the roots.
When Thomas Paine prints and distributes 100,000 copies of “Common Sense,” in 1776 the ideas lead to revolution, and a new country, the United States. In the 1960’s young people tired of watching their friends march off to a foreign war (and afraid they would be next), began a movement to end the War in Vietnam.
Today, high school students are the leaders for a movement for sensible gun control legislation. Two political bases, those calling for inclusion and those calling for protection, what the media is calling tribes, are struggling for political dominance.
The nastiness of these tribes, willing to fling aside any sense of decorum, civility, decency to win their point has erupted in the media with nasty tweets and comments, quickly apologized for as bad jokes that went too far. The fact is, while these comments make a political point, they are not funny.
Like-minded people might laugh, but more from a sense that a good burn was scored, rather than mirth. Friends are blocking each other on social media, and possibly even unfriending each other in their real life. Only those who keep their politics to themselves can maintain their friendships.
I’d like to wrap myself in my tribe and the comfort of just being in agreement with everyone, rather than feel on the defense all the time.
Mostly, I want to live in the kind of world my mother taught me about. A world where people treat each other with compassion and understanding. A world where agreement might not always be possible, but courtesy is.
We are lucky. We already have several examples of how to bring peace and forgiveness to the world. We can start a movement to make our world a kinder place, today.