April 1st: All fools’ Day? Dr James Kottoor

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james kottoor

 

On Apri 1st All fools’ day in 1960s I took over as editor of New LEADER, Chennai, after completing my 4-year journalism studies in US, from Msgr. Eric D’Soosa, a saintly non-controversial editor for long.

I did it because my equally saintly Archbishop Arulappa, with too much confidence in me, I guess, wanted me to do it immediately. I instead, being too diffident, unsure or cowardly, wanted  to practice under him at least for 6 months. But pressure from my well-meaning archbishop was too much. So I wanted to oblige him with my readiness to obey. So I punished myself, by selecting April 1st, to compromise with my reluctance! So it was a paradoxical(Chesterton, my favorite author) or conflicting start of a journalism career, undreamt of at that time.

It made true the comment of my succeeding editor about me: “It is unpredictable if James chased controversies or controversies chased him!” That also came true but unthought of and unpredictable at that time! This much today being APRIL FIRST 20021!

What is given below are titbits I copied from my today’s (April 1st) reading, an awful to reflect and react. Please do it for every one’s benefit!

Pursuit of peace should take precedence over the pursuit of war. my vocation and our vocation as seekers of justice and peace. There can’t be any compromise with white supremacy or entrenched corporate power. But I do still wonder whether my side is really as radical as it claims to be…how much are you personally willing to sacrifice for the achievement of the long-awaited radical revolution of values?.. Can there be fundamental transformation without sacrifice?

WAR ON TERROR?

What is our prophetic duty? a “vocation of agony,” of suffering? To be “paragons of virtue? Martin Luther King is scandalized that the United States finds it possible to make poor whites and poor Blacks fight and kill Asians together but won’t allow them to be schooled together here at home…War’s organized lethal violence represents a defeat for the wider cause of nonviolence—and here is where King enraged liberals and conservatives alike by calling the U.S. “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world.”… The true meaning and value of nonviolence is how it “helps us to see the enemy’s point of view.”… When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered…There is nothing to keep us from molding a recalcitrant status quo with bruised hands until we have fashioned it into a brotherhood… “We are now faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history, there is such a thing as being too late.”

“War on terror?” does it make sense? One being worse than the other? Finally, given how the practice of radical nonviolence implies a willingness to sacrifice, how much are you personally willing to sacrifice for the achievement of the long-awaited radical revolution of values?… Not all of us need to go to that limit, but all of us do need to ask ourselves whether we really believe there can be fundamental transformation without sacrifice."

Think over and react. Thanks!

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