This "superpower," "richest nation on earth" secretly hides an impoverished Third World country in each city. Should we be surprised by what we see in Baltimore?
Baltimore, my clan home, is a sweet colonial town on Chesapeake Bay. Seeing it burn makes me angry and sad. I defend myself from these feelings with the shield of blame: blame the police, blame the rioters, blame the mayor, the 1 percent, the anarchists, the welfare state, capitalism, Obama ...
Breathing out, I can drop my shield. Breathing in, I open to the swirling nameless dark, without labeling, without convenient stereotypes, without taking sides: for darkness has no sides. I can see the truth.
Each policeman is a child of humanity, struggling for dignity against terrible fear. Each rioter throwing bricks is a child of humanity, struggling for dignity against terrible fear. Politicians, business owners, high school students, National Guard troops, all struggle against a terrible fear: the fear of being separate, alone and lost.
I am a human child, too, struggling against fear. Opening to the chaos, what I encounter is not another, but my own heart. If we embrace ourselves with compassion first, then we may hope to embrace each other.