Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Something has come to my attention recently. It is the word peace. Different people from almost opposite sides of the world say the word with very different connotations. With the events leading up to the resignation of Liberian President Charles Taylor there have been many occasions on the television where I have seen Liberians saying the word peace. I suppose it wasn't until I heard a news report without images on National Public Radio, that I really took notice of what is a significant difference in the way that the Liberians say the word peace as opposed to the way that people from the U.S. say it. When someone in the U.S. says peace it is typically in a resigned and despondent tone. Sometimes it is said without conviction. It is as though Americans don't believe any peace is ever really possible.

When I heard the man on NPR say "peace" the other night on the radio, there was a different tenor to his voice. It took me a time to place it. Then I realized and thought to myself,"That man says peace like it is wrapped up in hope and faith." That is the difference between the United States and many other foreign countries. In the U.S. we have lost our hope and faith.