Silencing the Violence
This post is part of our Silence the Violence series in commemoration of National Silence the Violence Day on July 24th, 2010.
It does not take much common sense to want to Silence the Violence. Violence takes 1.6 million lives every year and effects billions more in the process. But in a world that socially accepts violence as the norm, violence is rarely addressed, making it quite hard to silence. People see it on movies, TV, video games and their evening news and say “This is just part of every day life”. While thousands have died fighting for our “freedom” in Iraq, millions play video games comfortably on their couch that imitate the same battlefields and missions that we have cut short so many lives.
I have always been opposed to violence, but never was an activist. I lost my cousin to gun violence in January. He grew up in the suburbs of Boston and lived in a poverty stricken area where there was just nothing to do. Poverty, social acceptance, lack of activities and many other things are more often than not the root causes of violence. Seeing my Aunt’s sad reaction at the funeral was had a huge impact. The sadness and despair of the situation inspired me to explore a career in violence prevention and is how I became an involved with Heal the Streets through the Metta Center’s internship program .
Coming to the Bay Area to learn about non-violence, I have found that there are organizations and people that work hard everyday against these things. Urban Peace Movement (the host of National Silence the Violence Day), Heal the Streets, Pace e Bene and thousands of other organizations around the country fight everyday to eliminate violence and injustice. All I have learned, and my ongoing commitment to remember my cousin are part of why this Saturday, I’ll be attending the Urban Peace Movement’s Silence the Violence Day Vigil in Poplar Park in West Oakland. I hope to see you there!
Check out all the cities where Silence the Violence Day events will take place. Even if there isn’t one near you, I challenge you this week to take a moment of silence for those lives lost every year from violence. If you feel compelled, comment on this blog post about the loved ones you have lost in life. It does not take much to silence the violence but with love, compassion and YOU, we can.
Feb 22, 2013
Feb 14, 2013
Jan 30, 2013
Jan 25, 2013