Liran Kapoano

What #BringBackOurBoys has exposed can no longer be ignored

We have all been rocked and shocked by the stunning, ongoing hostage situation in Israel. Almost paradoxically, at the same time, the incredible outpouring of support for the #BringBackOurBoys campaign has been absolutely inspiring.

Yet again a viral, grassroots campaign is proving that there is an incredible amount of pent-up support for a pushback against hatred and intolerance. We are all seemingly amazed at these events, both at the depths that blind and irrational hatred can drag human beings to, as well as the heights that compassion, understanding and basic human decency can elevate us to.

But should we be?

Is it really THAT surprising that over 90,000 people have declared their support for three innocent Jewish teenagers, abducted for no reason other than the fact that they are Jewish? If anything should be shocking, it’s that the number is not closer to 900,000 or 9 million. How cynical of a society have we become that we are BLOWN AWAY when we find that we are not entirely alone in this struggle against hatred?

How much have we de-valued OURSELVES that we have somehow accepted that the world will not respect us as human beings and rally behind us? I’m not so naïve as to expect better treatment in the court of public opinion. I too have been guilty of this kind of cynical thinking.

But this outrageous kidnapping situation and the continued success of viral, grassroots movements that refuse to accept terrorism and bullying as legitimate forms of expression should serve as a wake up call to us all that we need not accept this continued coarsening of our society. We cannot simply sit back and concede the narrative to the people who shamefully conflate human rights with the right to murder or kidnap humans.

#BringBackOurBoys should be a wake up call for all of us
#BringBackOurBoys should be a wake up call for all of us

Regardless of where the phenomenon of #BringBackOurBoys goes, it should PROVE to us, that when we push back against hatred, we are not just alone, screaming into the void. There are more of us than there are of them.

Regardless of where you stand on the ideological spectrum, there is no doubt that kidnapping innocent civilians (teenagers no less) and holding them ransom for ANY reason, is wrong. Murder for any reason is wrong. Terrorism for any reason is wrong.

There are many conflicts around the world, with good people and bad people on both sides. There are many questions as to how to move forward as a society and find peace and justice. There are many questions, but terrorism is NEVER the answer. Not in the Middle East, not in India, not in Africa, not in New York City, not ANYWHERE.

Can we all stand up and declare that we believe in this basic statement? Is it so hard to believe that we will get immense support for this?

This is a unique moment in time. The world is watching us – all of us – to see, not just what the outcome of the crisis will be, but how those of us who are on the right side of history will respond to the larger scourge of terrorism. We have everyone’s attention, the question is what will we do with it?

Will we ignore the fact that 2014 has so far been the year of the pushback?

Are we going to sit here in denial of the plain fact that when we refuse to bow down to bullying and hatred that we win? I certainly hope not. Because I for one, am sick of the cynicism and the defeatism. There are more of us than there are of them. I know it and you know it.

Now, let’s prove it.


If you agree with the statement that “Terrorism is not the answer” please show your support here and share this post with your friends:

And even if you don’t, or choose to express yourself in a different way, find the message that speaks to you and DO SOMETHING.

About the Author
Liran Kapoano is a business owner and Israel advocate with a passion for his family, adventure travel and marketing (although unfortunately not always in that order). He is also an Israeli trapped in an American body who enjoys a walk-off home run as much as a 91st minute soccer goal. He can be found agonizing over the current state of affairs @kapoano daily on Twitter.
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