September 21, International Day of Peace... another day that's gone unnoticed!

Monday, October 18, 2010

September 18 was the International Day Against Poverty. This past Saturday several events were held, some with massive participation and the publication of excellent manifestos, such as the "Alliance Against Poverty"... which didn't merit even a single mention in any of the major communications media. The press, television, radio... devote much time and space to news that are generally biased to reflect their political preferences, and they are extremely generous with anything related to "popular entertainment" -which may be the new "bubble"- while omitting any reference to the great challenges that have prompted the United Nations to devote to them a special "day ".

Citizens will never get the attention that their great personal and collective objectives deserve until the struggle against poverty, and the goals of peace and conciliation... are made part of their daily lives. Only then will they be able to unite their voices and demand that the communications media give them the attention that they so urgently need.

These dates are ignored because the "globalizers", who replaced democratic principles, values and social justice with the laws of the market, are not very interested in our ceasing to be silent and obedient subjects, permanent spectators of all types of sports events that they offer to keep us dormant.

Peace! We have wished each other "peace" for so many centuries that it has become a mere routine -peace be with you, salam, shalom...- but this doesn't influence our behavior because these are simply expressions that we have failed to actually internalize as something we truly desire. In the Catholic mass the word "peace" is repeated almost as often as the word "God", but contrary to what might be expected, not even the Church observes these days devoted to the great objectives of Mankind.

But, of course, on days commemorating past wars, parades and other activities are promptly broadcast, to fix in the minds of the people the importance of the military event in question.

We must thus transcend from a secular culture of force, violence and war to a culture of dialogue, understanding and peace. We will then be able to celebrate the days of fighting poverty and working for peace in the manner that they so deserve... And it won’t be long, because many citizens have realized that the time for silence and resignation is over. Today, and I’ll never tire of repeating this, distance participation is now possible through ICTs.

In that regard, in a few days, on October 2, the International Day of Non-Violence will be observed. I hope that, at least in cyberspace, many peoples’ voices will be heard.