If only we could say, “We must fight the bad guy. We must find him, wherever he is, and end him. Kill him. Look at these dead woman and children. Look at these atrocities committed in the name of THEIR god and THEIR government. As a matter of survival, not just of vengeance, we must destroy their ability to act.”
If only we could say, “Even though you look similar to the ones who have done this, or you hold a similar book sacred, or you come from the same patch of earth, I know this is not you and I love you because you are a human, just like me. Because if I hate you without knowing you, I only hate myself.”
If only we could say, “You are asking me to pick a side and so you are not on mine. I am on the no-side, side. You may call it cowardly but I will not be a part of something that I don’t agree with, simply because you insist your side is ‘less-worse’ than the other.”
If only we could say, “Anyone who would kill children, is not on my side. Anyone who would put children in the way of violence, is not on my side. Anyone who would trade bullets for words, is not on my side. Anyone who would blow up buildings, shoot down planes and leave family homes as ashes, is not on my side.”
If only we could say, “I am on the side of the children who have not yet died. I am on the side of the people they can still become. I am on the side of the mothers and fathers cowering in fear, trying to be brave. I am on the side of the old who believe that once again, they are being hunted because of what they believe. I am on the side of anyone who actually takes them time to think about all the things we could possibly say, and actually says them.”
If only we could say.