Updated: Apr 20, 2021
Teachers and Learners For a New Society
Image by Wikilmages, pixabay.com
As teachers and learners we can challenge the profit-before-people ideology of capitalism, counter the pervasiveness of violence in capitalist society, and take a stand against wars as acts of terror by national governments in collusion with corporate profiteers.
Capitalism combined with nationalism spawns militarism which glorifies wars. Wars are tragedies that governments dress up as national pride and public service. Wars ruin the lives of soldiers and communities alike by encouraging and condoning distrust, hatred, and violence between people of different faiths and ethnicities.
War is peddled as a career path for young working class people who have rightly figured out that society as currently structured has no place for them. Military recruitment in the schools is a travesty, full of jingoism and false promises. Schools must permit their students to hear a peace alternative to the propaganda delivered by military recruiters.
Peace is not just the pause between wars, but a total re-creation of society. This needs to happen for us as individuals and within our relationships in the family, at work, in the community, in our institutions, and across borders. It is a process of liberation in all aspects of life. It strengthens our connections, locally and globally.
As teachers and learners, our opposition to war becomes transformed by our focus on what we can accomplish through cooperation, compassion, collective action, discussion and debate, and peaceful means of solving problems.
Discrimination, gross inequality of income and opportunity, divide-and-conquer social policy, and endless forms of manipulation of all aspects of our lives allow 1% of the global population to control the lives of the rest of us through their wealth, power, lies, and conniving.
Indeed, the gap between rich and poor, privileged and ignored, ruled and exploited, has become a chasm of misery for most of the world's population. Solidarity of the international working class, achieved through egalitarian methods and structures, can change this situation.
As teachers and learners, we can put forward alternatives that reject the status quo and that model a new society-- one that enables and welcomes us to care for one another.
By making use of our knowledge and talents, asserting ourselves, and working together we can take our values and ideals from the realm of the “unrealistic” to the forefront of global mass action for a better world.
Susan Dorazio is a veteran peace campaigner who was branch secretary and outreach officer for the Industrial Workers of the World.
The photo shows her looking through a large pad of drawings from one of Glasgow's radical eras, this one being the mid-1990's. It was taken by her friend Stasia from Spirit of Revolt/Archives of Dissent.