Despite having nothing to report, I am going to blog because that's what bloggers do. They write even when nothing truly important is happening their lives. I've been reading Stanley "Tookie" Williams' autobiography, Blue Redemption, Black Rage (I may have accidentally interchanged the colors), and it is a fairly interesting read. It makes me think more about Colman McCarthy's speech, and how we are never taught peace or how to achieve it. I completely agree, but at the same time, I wonder how I'm supposed to define "peace." If peace is just the opposite of war, and the opposite of violence, then is a state of peace just a period where nothing is accomplished? Tension and conflict result in growth; therefore, does peace lead to anything? I think peace, because I can only define it in terms of what it isn't, is much more complex than war and violence. Or maybe Colman is right: it's only complex and undefinable because we've never had the opportunity to learn it. I always thought people loved violence; wasn't violence the reason I wanted to see Zodiac last night (and enjoyed by the way)? Wasn't it the reason I got addicted to playing games like Street Fighter and Mortal Combat, and then later on, Medal of Honor, Grand Theft Auto, and Conflict: Desert Storm; or why we played with, and watched the Ninja Turtles every afternoon?

If I had learned peace, if it was actually taught in our schools, would we have played cops and robbers? Even in Catholicism, the most memorable part is not the Sermon on the Mount, it's not Jesus' birth, or any miracles he performed. It's crucifixion. The bloodiest, most painful part of Jesus' thirty-three years on earth are what people remember most. Why is violence so memorable? I can't remember what I wore on my 21st birthday, but I can almost perfectly visualize planes exploding in skyscrapers, a senator shooting himself live on TV, Kane ripping out Sonia Blade's heart, an eyeball being squished by a bare foot, etc., etc.

These are all gory, horrible things that I would like to have eternally sunshined out of my mind, but for some reason, they are there, and they are the most vivid. Maybe the constant awareness of death makes us curious about, or even desire ultra-violence. My coworker, Ross, once told me he thought it was great that we have games like Grand Theft Auto where you can "go around shooting people, stealing cars, and blowing stuff up" because it was a "healthy way" of expressing something that's within all of us. I'd like to think that I don't have the capability to perform some of Zodiac's, Dahmer's, Bundy's, Kacyzinski's, Hitler's, Pat Bateman's, Leatherface's deeds, but I know it's in there, not just for me, but for everyone. It's a very unnerving thought.

Sometimes I wish for religious naivete, an ultra-conservative view, or that I could simply just forget that it exists, that these terrible things have happened. On the other hand, I could just turn of the TV, stop focusing on the negative, and remember that 99% of life is just waiting.

1 comment:

ultrafknbd said...

Calvin: How come we play war and not peace?

Hobbes: Too few role models.