Author: Kent Busse
The Old Testament identifies the function of persecution as “Take away the dross from the silver, and there shall come forth a vessel for the finer.”
Jesus instructed “Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.”
Gandhi taught “First they ignore you then they laugh at you then they fight you then you win.”
The US Marines put it this way: “If it doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger.”
Senseless persecution is the doorway through which America has admitted its Quakers, Jews, Mormons, Germans, Italians, Japanese, Chinese, Africans, Hispanics and Latinos into fellowship. Open, public confrontations are so much better than the secret police and mass disappearances employed elsewhere.
Young children are held up as our role models because they possess the pliability and resilience to express conflicts in heated screaming matches and move on from there to work out their differences and share the playground without perpetuating grudges. This is the power to be healed.
Allah and nonviolence will yet see us through the current round of persecutions by which Islam is assuring its diversifying role as a permanent fixture in the American landscape.
copyright © 2011 Kent Busse