MICHAEL N. NAGLER – Although I have been studying nonviolence â€“ and therefore indirectly violence â€“ for many years, what I want to share with you about this latest gun tragedy is just plain common sense. And not to keep you in suspense, hereâ€™s my answer: this man slaughtered his fellow human beings because he lives in a culture that extols violence. A culture that degrades the human image â€“ those two go together. How do I know? Because I live in the same culture; and so do you. And that uncomfortable fact is actually going to put us on the road to a solution.
Tag: Michael N. Nagler
Nonviolence is the Key to Our Future
MICHAEL N. NAGLER – He came out against the war. Against all advice. In his famous speech opposing the Vietnam War at New Yorkâ€™s Riverside Church on April 4, 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King announced to the world his departure, or rather expansion, of his role as civil rights leader to that of a prophet warning â€œthe greatest purveyor of violence in the world, my own government,â€ that they had put themselves on a course â€œapproaching spiritual death.â€
Nonviolence, Not Violence, Promises a Brighter Mid-East Future
MICHAEL NAGLER – The big picture is this: we live in a violent system. Overriding the unquenchable yearning for peace and unity in every one of us, and which is arguably much closer to our actual nature, is a distorting culture that possesses the world of our thoughts and emotions. We see it in, among other things, The overriding narrative of our culture, which is predicated on a dispiriting image of the human being. Institutions, like retributive justice that operate from this narrative. The guiding principle of competition that has come to be enshrined in business, education, entertainment, sports â€” and of course war.
Justice is Bigger Than â€œDonâ€™t Ask Donâ€™t Tellâ€
STEPHANIE N. VAN HOOK and MICHAEL N. NAGLER – In 1967 Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a speech at Ebenezer Baptist Church called â€œBeyond Vietnam,â€ where he declared that his conscience would not allow him to remain silent on the question of Vietnam, on the horrors of war, on the threat of violence to our existence. In this speech he pointed out the irony that young men of color were welcomed to join the military in order to burn villages and kill the people of Vietnam in the name of a democracy and of freedoms not yet granted to them in the country for which they fought. They could kill and wreak havoc side by side with white Americans in combat abroad, but they could not sit by one another in the same school or eat together at the same restaurant back home.