Strong reasons for avoiding violence in situations of conflict have been given by Mahatma Gandhi. To the insidious argument that "the end justifies the means", Gandhi answered firmly: "They say that 'means are after all means'. I would say that 'means are after all everything'. As the means, so the end. Indeed, the Creator has given us limited power over means, none over end... The means may be likened to a seed, and the end to a tree; and there is the same inviolable connection between the means and the end as there is between the seed and the tree. Means and end are interconvertable terms in my philosophy of life."
Trained as a lawyer, Gandhi fought his battles in the court of public opinion. In this court, violent methods fatally weaken one's case, besides being futile if one is opposing overwhelming military strength. Today, our case for the need to make rapid and fundamental changes must be fought in the court of public opinion. This is made difficult by the fact that the mass media are firmly under the control of powerholding oligarchs. However, the Internet is still relatively uncensored, and this gives us the opportunity to create our own media.
We give our children loving care; but it makes no sense to do so unless we also do all that is within our power to give them a future in which they can survive.
None of us asked to be born at a time of crisis, But we have been born at such a time, and history has given us an enormous responsibility. If we do not work with courage and dedication to save our beautiful world for future generations, all of the treasures that past generations have given to us will be lost. You and I, all of us together, can save the future if we work hard enough. Let us join hands and save the earth for our children and grandchildren.
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