This video has received hundreds of thousands of views. You’ve probably seen it yourself on your computer or on television. It is touching and hopeful during a dark time in our world. It also reminds me of the 1960’s when “flower power” was used as a weapon by protesters against the Viet Nam War. Baby boomers, members of the most privileged generation in history, dropped out of mainstream society to live in communes, celebrate free love and wear flowers in their hair. They wanted to stop the West’s involvement in Viet Nam. They wanted to follow the Beatles to the Maharishi and “love, love, love.” They wanted to “give peace a chance.”
The war in Viet Nam did end, eventually. Most of the communes disappeared as the reality of living off the land struck home and the Beatles have disbanded. The world desperately wants to “give peace a chance” yet some extremists are determined to plunge us into anarchy instead.
Listening to this little boy and his father harkens back to those innocent days of the ’60’s, before 9/11, before Madrid, before London , before the attack on Parliament in Canada. . . and before Paris. In the face of such evil, flowers and candles seem a poor defence, and yet . . .
When free citizens refuse to live in fear, when we reject xenophobia, when we hang onto our compassion, when we place a flower, when we light a candle, we bring light to a dark world. Hate loves darkness, it lives in the shadows, it thrives behind walls. Let us light candles. Let us wear flowers in our hair. Let us unite against hate. Let us love.