Seeing as my last post was about the power of words, I saw a quote on Twitter today that pretty much sums up the entire impetus of my research; why I care about this stuff. Why I'm so passionate about it. The quote was attributed to Frederick Douglass, and when I read it I was taken aback by it's simplicity and perfection.
"It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men."
This quote really speaks to me. It really demonstrates why I feel that peace studies and quality of life are such important concepts. We raise these children in areas of war. Their families are broken, their futures are a mystery, their hope evaporates. And then we wonder why they grow up to be desperate, irrational, hateful. Look at this "lost generation" of Syrian children. They have seen their lives ripped apart, their family or friends killed or wounded, their home destroyed. They are living as refugees on the fringes of society in countries that are not their own. And we wonder what the future holds for them. This is happening all over the world- in the West Bank, in Venezuela, in Nigeria, in Afghanistan. They are lost children today- but tomorrow they will be autonomous adults. What have we taught them about the world? About the value of life? About hope? How can we expect anything other than "broken men" to emerge from these messes we have created?