For A Reduction of Violence on the U.S. Domestic Front



For a reduction of violence on the U.S. domestic front educators on all levels will have to do what I suggest here, or attempt to implement or embrace some significant variation of it.

  1. Educators cannot think that our present wars are necessary, cannot believe and teach that we are “exceptional” in a positive way with our ongoing behavior overseas. They must be knowledgeable about the regular atrocities we commit abroad, the unnecessary abominations which are as horrific as anything on record for the 20th century worldwide. No matter what discipline is their academic focus.

  2. Educators must see the positive correlation between domestic violence between spouses, gang violence, rape, child abuse, suicide, the inappropriate militarization of local law enforcement and increasing aggression in community interaction with our momentum overseas. All of those — outside of academia, in the so-called real world — are being dealt with in isolation, as if the flow of national violence can be stemmed piecemeal. In many cases, well-meaning professionals have simply given up on being able to deal with the ultimate sources of violence; their approaches to addressing “sources” is myopic in the best cases. Potential acclimatization to society is the point of departure for virtually all treatment.

  3. Educators — in addressing violence of any kind within our schools — must cease placing an exclusive emphasis on gun control. At the very least, a simultaneous focus on our unwarranted invasions and interventions abroad must be part of any discussion. Each and every time the topic turns up.

  4. Educators must acknowledge that the routinely monthly abominations committed by U.S. corporations abroad — environmental and otherwise — far outweigh the violent criminal acts of all citizens who have ever been incarcerated in this country. That — to single out but one corporation at random — Bechtel commits more horror in a week than the present prison population of 2.3 million could commit in a full year if released overnight. Restorative Justice programs must factor in that fact of life; they are not doing so at present, and so unnecessary narrow views of how to improve the lives of those arrested and/ released are the rule. Statistical improvements cited in traditional ways — though important — do not address the painful internal dynamics that live on. [Elaboration, upon request.]

  5. Educators need to review what role individual hard work, commitment and the securing of academic degrees can play these days in the context of our horrid societal momentum. Meaning, there must be a re-evaluation of the new limitations that fresh graduates from high school and college will face. I do not see that taking place. The dynamic touched upon here — not discussed much, if at all — involves increasing debt, increasing frustration with diminishing healthy opportunities, movement away from collective concerns, purely utilitarian foci, etc., all of which can easily lead to some kind of violence.

  6. Educations are obliged to review the ethics they are reinforcing. And clarity must be established with regard to how personal lifestyle changes will be required.

  7. When someone graduates from high school or college they should be able to explain — effortlessly — why it’s our wars that feed and lead to violent forms of entertainment, why it’s not games and shows that create wars.

What kind of “education” is taking place which omits even consideration of the above? And what chance is there of things changing if those sins of omission continue in the realm of education?

Valleria Ruselli can be reached at [email protected]


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