Social Media And People Of Good WillPosted: March 22, 2012 | |
We’ve seen the power of social networks in action—the Arab Spring, the explosion in Athens, the spreading Occupy actions around the world. Facebook and Twitter have by-passed conventional media outlets, giving private citizens eyes on the world in real time, regardless of geographic location. You Tube and live streaming have piped uncensored images to all corners of the globe. But recently, there’s been a new development in usage, a reach-out campaign by two Israeli graphic designers, horrified by the bellicose rants for war in their own country, Iran and the US. The saber rattling has gone unabated as politicians, commentators, and Heads of State seemingly try to outdo one another with Dirty Harry rhetoric.
Ronny Edry and Michal Tamir had a simple idea. There’s a certain beauty to simplicity. The couple designed a template to be used on Facebook, posters of themselves that say:
Iranians. We will never bomb your country. We love you.
Initially, their friends scoffed and said they were crazy and naïve. Several messages they received at the beginning were cynical, mocking in nature. But then, other Israelis joined in and Iranian responses followed. In fact, the two Israelis started receiving messages from around the world. Citizens talking to citizens, devoid of leaders, diplomats, generals and propaganda.
We don’t want war, the messages read. We’re sick of war. We’re sick of the people leading us into war. The You Tube posting states it clearly:
Crazy? Naïve? Perhaps. But I couldn’t help recalling that old line from the Vietnam era: What if a war was planned and no one came? What if?
We’re living in dangerous, uncertain times but along with that comes great opportunity for change. I really like the idea of individuals reaching out in creative ways to change the unchangeable, to push against the unmovable. No guarantees, of course. There are few positive stories out there anymore but this just happens to be one. More information can be found here.