Deb Brandon: Living in Radiant Color

The People

When I first heard the latest news about what’s going on in Israel, I was focused on my family in Israel, my friends, my people. On my timeline, I shared a poster depicting kids living in shelters for fear of the rockets launched by Hamas. I also shared a poster about Israel’s right to defend itself. Then I started reading general hate filled comments that these posters evoked; hatred of Palestinians, hatred of Jews.
And I woke up—I deleted the posters from my timeline. I didn’t want to play any part in eliciting such poison, such hatred.
I read about Egypt, France, and the U.S, condemning Israel, supporting Israel, “Hamas is to blame,” “Israel needs to stop the aggression.”
I see puppeteers on both sides, sitting, protected by their puppets, orchestrating the violence, driving it. And whoever those puppeteers are, I know that they are not the people. I know that what drives the puppeteers is primarily power and greed; I know that the people are not high on their list of priorities.
And then there’s the media spreading the poison, giving it credence. Our opinions and actions are no longer our own, they are reflections of the voices of world leaders, religious leaders, the ones in power.
We forget about the people.
The people are merely pawns in a game, a game run by those in power, whose voices are echoed by those of us who judge from afar, spewing poisonous opinions.
It no longer matters who started the violence and why, whether it was about religion, economics, politics, survival, or a combination thereof. What matters is that there is no end in sight.
Instead of focusing on the hatred, we should be focusing on the people, the pawns, the victims, the men, the women, and the children, on both sides, who merely want to survive.