Have you ever heard the saying, “One person can make a difference”? It only takes one person to throw their idea out in the world and it can escalate to something extraordinary. That is exactly what happened to Ronny Edry Pushpin.
Principia College was hosting the Public Affairs Conference (PAC) to which I went. The conference had so many amazing people from around the world who are making a difference -Ronny was one of those people. I had the privilege to hear him speak and have a one on one talk with him and his amazing wife.
You probably are wondering, what did this man do? Ronny is a graphic artist who often posts things on Facebook. One day he finally had enough with the conflict with Iran. He got his wife to take a photo of him and his daughter together. Using his skills as a graphic artist he created the poster pictured above. He didn’t expect anything to come of it but around mid-night he went online and got the biggest surprise of his life. There were hundreds of comments and messages from Iranians so happy to know there were people from Israel that didn’t hate them. “We love you” are simple but strong words
Now he has started a chain of “Israel loves Iran” to others like “Iran loves Israel”, “Israel love Palestine” and the list goes on and on. He has 111,262 likes and the number keeps growing. He has gotten to know many people from Iran and both sides are realizing it’s their government and the media who exaggerates the hostility between both countries to their people.
The government has taught their people to see the other side as enemies. What Ronny soon realized was that each side has so much in common, they’re both real; people who smile, cry, hate, and love. The government had just dehumanized the people towards each other, that is why they could kill and hate each other so easily. The government teaches the children to fear one another so as they grown up their fear turns to hate without having an actual reason to hate one another.
This movement has opened the eyes and minds of so many people around the world. It just took one simple idea to spread to others; as Ronny said, “Just do it”. We need to take action and stop the hate and misjudgments in this world. If it is just loving everyone even if it seems like the hardest thing to do, love without judgment, then maybe it could spread and make a difference in our world.
About two weeks ago I interviewed a lady who I will never forget. Elisabeth Seaman is a holocaust survivor and has become a mediator. She told me how she forgave the people who sent her and her family to the Holocaust concentration camps. She feels like loving and forgiving is the way to peace.
She had never planned to be a mediator but it was like it was sent to her to discover is something she discovered later in her life and now she knows it was meant to be. Mediation is a way she can help others find peace like she did.
She is an unforgettable person who dealt with hardships no young girl should ever have had to go through. It was all because of a man whose hatred towards a religion and its people caused so many inauspicious deaths.
We can ask ourselves why it happened, why no one stopped him but truthfully we know the answers for both questions. It was turning a blind eye. The people of that era knew that something bad was happening but felt like it was not their problem. Because of the world’s ignorance of not stopping before it was too late many suffered.
When we turn a blind eye to others being judged or stereotyped we are committing the same mistake people committed 7o years ago. We need to open our eyes and mind and realize that making assumptions, judging and stereotyping opens the door to hatred; a quality that no human should ever have. Not only does the victim suffers and feels belittled but you will also suffer from your own hatred even if it was a “joke”. We need to think twice before allowing ourselves to fall In the cycle of hatred.
When looking at this photo what do you think? (Assuming you don’t know us) Oh they’re pretty, they’re both foreign, I wonder where they might be from, I wonder if she is Mexican (left) and if she is from India (right). You don’t realize that you are making these assumptions until after they are made.
We all see people around us and try to figure them out before talking to them, why is that? Why can’t we make conversation and get to know who they really are before evaluating them?
This girl on the right is my best friend. We both have two completely different religions, cultures, ethnicity, and two different political views. Despite all these differences we are still best friends. To some you might be confused on why this would matter, but what you don’t realize is that around the world there are actual wars because of differences like that.
During the Partition of India in 1947 the Muslims were forced out of India into Pakistan because of the areas in India that were majorly Hindu. There were many slaughters on both sides just because of their religion. Then there is Israel, against almost all the countries surrounding them just because they are a Jewish country.
Between North Korea and the United States of America there is major animosity between because of their political views and cultural differences.
The list can go on and on. What if people around the world could just listen to each other and talk to each other in a civilized matter. There would be more friendships around the world with different cultures. If we don’t assume straight away because of how they look, talk, or their religion then there would no longer be unnecessary wars and slaughters. The word “world peace” would actually mean something.
If my friend and I could drop our differences and get to know each other without trying to assume things about one another, then others could also do the same. It’s simple. Next time you see someone Hispanic, don’t come to the conclusion they are Mexican. There is more than one Hispanic country. If someone looks Indian they might be from Trinidad or elsewhere. Try approaching people who look different than you and striking up a conversation, you might learn something new of another culture or country.
I have started this blog because I want to help bring peace to the world. You might be wondering bring peace to the world? That’s so cliché right? Maybe you’re wondering how you or I can bring peace. Something’s are just as simple as a smile, love, or maybe it’s not stereotyping or amusing? Stereotyping is “a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing: “sexual and racial stereotypes””. ( Google’s definition ) All around the world there are fights/wars/hatred toward one another simply because people are not informed. How simple would it be to stop all that and not assume or judge before knowing someone?
“Instead of being presented with stereotypes by age, sex, color, class, or religion, children must have the opportunity to learn that within each range, some people are loathsome and some are delightful.”
― Margaret Mead
society assumes we need to stop ! #peace #love #nowar