LOVE IS A FOUR-LETTER WORD

A friend from Washington state called the other day and as usual, the conversation drifted over a wide variety of subjects. One of them was hippies and what being a hippie was all about. My friend is convinced that hippies were unwashed, long-haired, drug-using bums and nothing I could say did anything to dissuade her from that view.

The truth is that hippies were all about love, ending war, getting along with each other. That’s what love-ins were about. Love, simple as that. So what happened is that the hippies were attacked by the media and the lie spread that all hippies were dirty mooching bums. Most hippies, and I was one of them, were clean people who held down jobs like anyone else. We were just tired of our leaders sending us off to die in strange lands so they could get richer and have more power. We were tired of being treated as cannon fodder in our daily lives, and we wanted it to stop. We wanted to stop all the hate.

Nothing lasts, and now there’s more hatred in the world than there’s ever been before in my lifetime, or since the Second World War ended, anyway. I read in this morning’s news that the Islamic State fanatics chopped off the head of a 16 year old boy for failing to show up for Friday prayers. There’s a photo of it on Breitbart News, right before his head was lopped off, and in the background is a big crowd of men all gawking for a look, some standing on objects to give them a higher, better view. What kind of mentality would want to see a boy being brutally murdered? That’s an amazing amount of hatred and a massive lack of love.

Love seems to be going out of the world. What we see now that’s supposed to be demonstrations of love, is sex. But sex isn’t love. It can be an expression of love, one of many different ways to express love, but we call having sex “making love”, when it very seldom really is.

Love is expressed by giving and sharing, helping each other, being kind to each other and respecting each other. There’s none of that in Islam, certainly none in Islamic State, where acts expressing love are seen as weakness and possibly even heresy that deserves death.

I’m reminded so much of the Nazis, the utter lack of leniency, sympathy, kindness. You follow the rules exactly or you die, mistakes are not allowed. And I wonder, is humanity going to allow this cancer to continue to spread? It wouldn’t be a first, Nazism was allowed to spread until it threatened to engulf the world, only then did people unite against it and by then, the cost in human life to defeat it was in the millions of people. Now here we go again.

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