When people are armed and outraged, the world so easily collapses into us vs. them. All complexity vanishes. People's life purpose clarifies into a simplistic certainty: Kill the enemy. Indeed, sacrifice your life to do so, if necessary.
In this one world, it sometimes seems a race is on between the newly empowered and the recently dispossessed. The truth is not only that both realities exist simultaneously, but that one is a condition of the other.
From now on, when I feel the urge to dictate that my kids behave generously, I'm going to turn the mirror around for a few seconds and ask myself, "What can I do, in this very moment, to display generosity?"
War doesn't work. Bombing ISIS doesn't work. Closing our border to Syrians -- or Mexicans -- doesn't work. Yet "we," by which I mean the whole world, go back to this suicidal behavior again and again and again. Why are we violent but not illiterate?
What matters here is not the fixing of personal blame (or lack thereof), but the acknowledgment of systemic and historic wrong of monumental proportions and -- at long, long last -- a momentum of social healing that doesn't end prematurely.