Syria Retaliation: What are we teaching our children?

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Syria Retaliation: What are we teaching our children?

Syrian childrenThe new school year has started. Teachers are busy educating their new students about how to behave in the classroom - How to make friends. How to help others. How to deal with bullies. In some school districts and states teachers are implementing new and tougher policies against bullying. These policies are very strict. Here, for example, is a link to New York State's Anti-bullying policy. Under this policy a teacher in my community was recently suspended from teaching for waving his finger in a student's face while reprimanding him.

We, as advocates of social justice, peaceful coexistence, and global community, find bullying in schools reprehensible as witness the numerous posts on the issue on our blog. But we have to wonder where is the anti-bullying policy for our government?

We teach our children not to hit, not to retaliate, not to take revenge, not to hate. We have strict policies in place to deal with bullying incidents when they occur. Those policies do not allow us to hurt or retaliate against the bully. That would be more bullying. Instead, in schools, we have due process and non-violent consequences. Isn't that the kind of process that we should expect from our government when our country and the world must deal with a bully?

So what should we do when someone uses horrid chemical weapons against innocent people? Bomb them to smithereens? Or should we deal with them as we teach our children to do.

  1. Refuse to sink to the same level as the bully - reject violent retaliation.
  2. Show concern for the victims - send medical aid and doctors to the injured.
  3. State what the bully did that was wrong and help the victims get away and heal - open our door to the refuges from Syrian violence.
  4. Gather others to protest the bully's actions - people should be marching all over the world to ban chemical weapons from existence including our own stock piles.

My goodness, it's so simple a child could learn to do this.

Why can't the people we elect do so?

Find anti-bully lessons for the new school year here:

Teach Peace Now
Teach Peace Now

We offer books, activities, lesson plans, and ideas that teachers, parents, and students can use to promote values, attitudes and behaviors which encourage non-violent resolution of conflict, respect for human rights, democracy, intercultural understanding and tolerance.

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