Moral stories: Europe’s birthday

Stories and News No. 974

The treaty that officially gave birth to the European Economic Community is an international agreement which established the EEC, the forerunner of today's European Union.
It was signed on 25 March 1957 and tomorrow will turn sixty.
It is yet another birthday for the old continent, which is a mosaic of words and more or less pronounced lines on the map, loved and idealized, as detested and even hated, especially in the last decade.
A complicated design, so...

Europe is like a drawing.
And a drawing is like a child’s dream.

Who dreams of a drawing himself playing a game.
Serious and crucial hobbies are those lived by the beardless creatures of this world, despite the poor memory of the elderly ones.
The kid is sitting with crossed legs on the ground, in his bedroom.
The bowed head on the floor and the various forms called toys.
In other words, as the so-called adults define them.
You have noticed, right?
The main characters of the extraordinary wonder of playing healthy and explore fantasy rarely uses these words.
As if calling something a toy could made it suddenly devoid of magic, unable to fly or, at worst, to be anything beyond the limits of the eye.
While a blinded version of the latter, obsessed with the monitor’s glare and lying special effects, see only a jumble of objects without any reasonable combination, the child extends his gaze inspired by his still intact imagination.
There is a little, dented car and a puppet with a crooked leg, a pair of mismatched bricks and a handful of discolored animals, a robot with low batteries and a deflated ball, but still useful to the task, a piece of something that you do not what it is and another that you know it, but totally ignore where the rest is, and more.
The child looks at everything from above and start playing with confidence.
To put together and create.
To generate time and space.
Something was not there before.
To make sense of his project.
What was there at the very beginning.
He just needed to want it, really want to.
A complete design.
Often he will listen voices saying that the final work does not work, but the reasons the casual judges will find, they are actually good reason.
Because it was fine composed.
The drawing was imagined and built from above, yes it was, but that does not mean that the hands worked in a rush and without affection for each part.
The drawing is not yet finished and continues to change, but this is inevitable, as long as it is alive.
The drawing needs to be explained to those who did not play, and above all it must be defended at any price.
Because being there, on the floor, anyone could feel entitled to stomp and destroy it…

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Stories to think about: the two attacks

Stories and News No. 973

Once upon a time there were two attacks.
Both terrorist.
In other words, potentially capable of terrorizing lives and looks, present and future.
They equally occurred on March twenty-two, 2017.

However, as it often happens to what makes up our common history, there are more or less significant differences.
In one five people died and there were at least forty injured.
In the other there are thirty-three deaths, no one survived.
In the first one it seems that the bomber is one.
In the second, they are many more, although it seems that the finger on the damn button was only one.
One have already got the usual claim, with all the usual guesswork out.
In the other it is not necessary, because the culprit is clearly visible under the sun.
Maybe too much.
The first one is a horrible thing and it is natural to grieve, right to get angry and required to investigate the facts in the shadows.
The second is just as horrendous and it would be natural to grieve, right to get angry and required to investigate the facts in the shadows.
One has already its wiki page.
The other does not have enough sources.
The first is newsworthy.
The second estranges sponsors and empathy.
One generates understandable doubts, sensible questions and countless interpretations. Yet an aura of certainty seems to envelop viewers and orchestrators.
The other is undisputed about its murderous hand’s detached atrocities as the tragic and unacceptable innocents’ end. Nevertheless, doubts and even denials stand united as a tidal wave, facing the still, hot blood of the dead.
The first affects whole societies, elections and the greatest newspapers home page.
The second kills, period.
One is systematically exploited to foment hatred and madness.
The other does the same and it is absurd that only a few is aware of it.
Paradoxically, it seems that the former is able to make supportive and united those who wage war on a daily basis in all lawful ways today grants.
Equally unexpectedly, it seems that the latter is able to do the same with those who, the day before, were convinced that the killers of their loved ones were their savior. Supportive, united and infinitely full of anger, to be precise.
Once there were two attacks.
Both terrorist.
In a few words, really able to terrorize people and horizons, present and future.
They both took place in 2017, the twenty-second of March.
Maybe not so disconnected from each other.
One in London and the other in Syria.
The first near Westminster and Parliament.
The second in a school where refugees from the conflict had thought to find, indeed, the long-desired refuge.
Nevertheless, as it often happens to what gives shape to our common existence, there are more or less significant variances.
It's up to us to decide whether allowing the latter to move our feelings and our intellect or maybe our rationality and the much-underrated humanity…

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Environmental stories 2017: Water’s birthday

Stories and News No. 972

A recent UNICEF report states that climate change and conflicts are increasing risks for children living without enough water, and that the poorest among them will suffer more and more.
The NGO WaterAid asks international and national leaders to keep their promises of reaching the objectives of sustainable development, including ensuring free access to safe drinking water and sanitation

Once upon a time there was the Water’s Day.
I am talking her party, her birthday and name-day at the very same time.

Now the room is packed, everybody is there.
Or almost, as it often happens.
This is a particular lounge for special celebrations, as there are no walls and ceilings, electrical wiring and air spaces, various fixtures and other human devilries.
Because at the end of it, all would be a waste of time and time is not money, here.
It is much more, it is water.
Indeed, this is Water’s time.
It is now and perhaps it always has been, on the planet by the usurper name.
Earth was a mistake, H2O should be the right nickname.
The guests are all around her, or nearly so, and the anniversary’s Queen cries of joy, laughs not to suffer more, and dances and thanks.
“Happy birthday,” says a glass on behalf of its fellows, “because you filled my invisible soul.”
“Have a wonderful time, my friend,” exclaims a flower, “because as a generous and loving mother, you lift me up covering me with your love.
“Bless you,” praise together the green lawn and the barren land, the arid steppe and the inevitable red-hot desert, “because despite all differences decided by luck, rewarding us with your harmony, you make us as a unique, happy thing.
“Thank you, again and again thanks for your presence,” exclaim mountains and hills, ridges and volcanoes, valleys and more or less steep slopes, “because you merges us in a multi-faceted and interesting design as the worth of reading and living stories.
“We are debtors and we will be forever,” sing the seas and oceans, bound by rivers of gratitude and a still innocent lake of astonishment, even more vibrant that the very first day, in front of the liquid miracle that keeps on the game for everything and everyone .
“One hundred and a hundred more, a thousand and a thousand again, the whole universe time and also what was never discovered by the open eyes star counters,” recite the animals arriving at the court of the only sovereign that turns everyone in kings with a mere drop of her heart.
There was once the Water’s Day, I said earlier.
A birthday, but it is not really the exact one, maybe just the name-day.
Anyway, the party has already begun.
There are everybody, here, all of them were always there.
But, to be honest, they are not everybody at all.
Perhaps there will still be a tomorrow to celebrate, not forever, but maybe we can hope for more days like this.
If to give thanks, and more than ever to offer the right devotion and the sacred respect, we will be there too…

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Moral stories: the beaver’s lesson

Stories and News No. 971

The xenophobic populism’s defeat came in the recent elections in the Netherlands.
Dutch voters have turned their backs on extremism, perhaps demonstrating the beaver’s lesson...

"How strong should be the dam?" Asks the younger brother.

"As much and stronger than the river," the older replies.
"How strong is the river?"
"An old mountaineer proverb says..."
"Another maxim, bro?"
"Yes, another one, until they are valid."
"Go on, then, shoot, I'm all teeth."
"Ears, you mean."
"Forgive me, I’m tired of gnawing, complete your motto."
"I said, as an old proverb says, don’t ask how strong the river is, but rather..."
"I don’t remember the rest, sorry, blame the age."
"What age? You are just one year older than me. "
"Well, you are no longer a youngster too. In fact, is that molar on the lawn one of yours? "
"No, it's yours."
"Oops... anyway, we’ll do our best as always and if the river will be stronger, we’ll work harder, giving everything."
"Because the rivers don’t stop alone."
"And because we cannot much alone, but together..."
"Because it's easy to go over everything and everyone."
"And because it’s difficult to understand everything and everyone."
"Because, at the same time, it’s impossible to remain indifferent to everyone and everything."
"And because once you really understand who someone is, you cannot help but see him."
"Because nature gives us the trees and ignorance to burn them."
"But even the teeth to model and claws to weave them."
"It's easier to clear than draw."
"To push on, rather than embrace."
"Hurt is a gesture that needs an instant."
"And taking care of is a story that lasts as long as those who care and those who are cared for will live."
"It takes being careful to join the banks one other."
"And unremitting efforts."
"As it takes nothing at all to leave things as they are, at the mercy of what wipes out others’ lives."
"So we don’t need to know how much the river will be strong, right?"
"Well, if we knew before, it would not hurt..."
"Yes it is."
"But we'll never find out if we remain here to count how many teeth we have left."
"And combing the fur."
"Exactly, so no more talk."
"If it should come to rain?"
"An old proverb from the valleys says..."
"I get it, do as if I had not spoken, let’s work."
"Let’s work."

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Human Rights Stories: The River’s Day

Stories and News No. 970

New Zealand has decided to grant a river the same legal rights attributed to a human being.
After 140 years of negotiations, a Maori tribe gets the recognition for the Whanganui River. This implies, from now on, that the latter must be treated as a person.

The day of the river.
We want to call it so.
So we want to remember it.
Today is an historic day, the most important in its story, the very first, the one that gives life to all others.
It took forty years after a hundred more to get it.
The exceptional, unexpected and painful, normalcy.
The River’s Day is our day.
The reasons are many, your honor or dishonor, that is the same.
Since the party has now begun and we are already in the streets to celebrate.
We are children of the river, we are composed of water and hope almost in totality, because the flesh is thin and the bones are brittle, but a raging torrent impels us, in spite of appearances.
We look for the sea from the top of a mountain of desires, waiting for a mouth of any form, since delta or estuary is the same to us.
What matters is that the goal will show itself before eyelids had been closed for good.
We just need to see.
To dream is enough.
The day when the river will join the father.
The instant it will embrace the mother.
With constant waves there will be no betrayal for every drop of our scroll.
We will merge with the life that awaits and we will be something unique.
Part of the natural design.
The saint cycle that lifts you into the sky without killing you.
Bringing you back to earth without hurting you.
Today is the day of the river and it is a great one.
Because if you are an inseparable portion of the waves you cannot sink.
You cannot be shipwrecked.
You cannot die within yourself, because you are the water.
You are the life.
You are alive.
As everything is.
Let’s give thanks to the sisters and the brothers who did not give up.
And yes, let us do the same with those who finally surrendered to it.
The underestimated, confused and abused normalcy.
Because if a river took forty years plus hundred to be recognized as a human being.
It means that our victory is not so far away...

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