As someone who’s served in combat in the military in the Middle East I’m very familiar with fear and anger. A grandmother, in the street at 3AM along with her family – almost everyone in their apartment – waiting to have their IDs checked. Her fear of loss. Her anger at lack of control. Of the sullen, old men, deemed not “dangerous” enough to be hidden away, ashamed of losing honor in front of their families and neighbors. Of the fear in the soldiers and officers in having to be so close to so many unknown, unsearched people. Afraid of the buildings looming even one story above, and the snipers they might hide.
Living in Texas I see the same from some ultra-conservative Christian families, who live in fear of hell, of sin, of their children’s ruin by exposure to secular society, where ideas roam free for adoption, rejection, or modification.
The theme of fear of losing control, anger at not having control, and further anger at those they believe have caused said loss of control, keep people from even the semblance of peace. Religious leaders willing to send adherents to a martyr’s death rather than lose power and influence, the government afraid to let women drive lest they somehow be corrupted by the act of being far from male dominance. Governments afraid to loosen their death grips on their populace lest they be less seen as Dear Leaders.
Peace, I am only beginning to see, lies in understanding that there is the very small set of things one controls or influences. Everything else works its own machinations, impinging on one’s sphere of influence at its, and not our, whim.