Good Guys beat Bad Guys—thrilling, suspenseful, satisfying, right?
I enjoy an exciting story as much as the next person. However, as I read hundreds of bedtime stories/novels to my daughters when they were younger, I wished at least some stories featured just-as-gripping nonviolent tactics to save the day. Or explored the whole concept of “the Bad Guys” in all its complexity. Laudably, books on nonviolent social change abound in the nonfiction section. But on the fiction shelves they are as rare as a four-leaf clover.
At that same time, I was a volunteer state coordinator in the campaign for a U.S. Department of Peace (see http://www.thepeacealliance.org/ ) It was very inspiring work, and I loved it. Still I couldn’t help but notice that while I felt lucky to speak to 20 or 25 people about how to move toward a culture of peace, books and movies were easily drawing in thousands of people.
A light bulb went off—Why not get creative types to write novels and screenplays highlighting not-violent, win/win victories? Let people see, through story, how nonviolence works and how valuable it can be. Interestingly, I discovered many others had that same idea. Probably with the turmoil in the world today, we’re all seeing the need to train the spotlight on alternatives to violence.