Let us launch one of the largest advertisement campaigns ever undertaken. If we are to fight terrorism, there is more to it than warring in Iraq and Afghanistan. There is more to it than firing missiles at al-queda and ISIS.
The power of the word is as mighty as the power of the sword, maybe more so.
So, we find ourselves suffering from one mass killing after another. If we really believe the power of words is as mighty as the sword, why would we not take it up? The string of mass murders might be ended as quickly with the word as it is with the sword.
You've heard of public service announcements? This would be along those lines, except PSAs are typically unpaid, and we would pay for these. And PSAs never have been as big as what we would do with this. We would flood the media.
Literally flood the media,
Every TV station, every large newspaper and every notable Internet site would have one of these "PSAs." And, the effort wouldn't stop there. We would call on civic leaders, church leaders, youth leaders and others to take up the campaign, speaking to their groups, urging them to stand against the violence.
We would call on their leaders. From the leaders of their nations to the community leaders they have in the U.S., we would ask them all to speak against the violence, to call their people together and reason with them.
I see a scroll come across the screen in one such ad, rolling like a credit line of a movie, citing one after another of the mass murders, pointing out the waste of lives. The words, "What did they do wrong?" crystallize on the screen, then fade, as do the following words:
"Not a thing."
"What did they do to offend their killers?"
"Unknown. In almost every case, they didn't even know them."
"What was achieved?"
"What was accomplished?"
Another ad would portray the victims in their lives, showing them smiling, being friends, helping each other and enjoying life. Then, their images would fade to a cemetery, and grave markers would appear, and grass growing over the graves and blowing in the wind, depicting the needless waste of humanity, and of goodness.
The ads would try not to inflammatory. They would seek not to heighten bad feelings between us and ISIS and al-queda. They would try not to be adversarial. While they would point out al-queda and ISIS is doing is wrong, they would not offer harsh rhetoric that would escalate the bad feelings. If you want to win someone over, you don't call them names and demean them.
Even ISIS and al-queda.
Instead, they would simply point that what is being done is unnecessary, hurtful, damaging, and unproductive. In those points, the ads would be very forceful. The ads would be more of an effort to reason with al-queda and ISIS and their followers than a condemnation of them.
"We call for peace," the final line of the ad would say, or maybe, "We call for doing what's right." Or maybe both.