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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Out of the Storm and Into a New View of the World

Airports are a mass of humanity. Most of them are stressed out. I’m in the Reagan International Airport. I am stuck here because my flight was OVERBOOKED!!!!! UGH!!!!!!! I have grown to dislike immensely airports and flying.

My flight into DC was stressful. I flew out in the middle of a snowstorm that had finally hit Vermont. Of course prior I had been wishing for the snow that seemed to be going elsewhere all winter. I love skiing (and would prefer to be doing so this weekend but like I said I am stuck in an airport).

On Wednesday when I flew out, it was a true blizzard with everything—roads, ground, horizon, air—pure white. As we climbed higher and higher after takeoff the plane tossed and turned more violently with every gain in altitude. And when it reached its worse—and my prayers and thoughts of loved ones most fervent—it broke. And what I viewed was what I had as a small child imagined heaven was: the sunset expansive over hundreds of miles of blue clouds!

Here I am again awaiting a flight into a storm, however reflecting on the light beyond the clouds, I recognize that this week has resulted in a fairly productive series of events; the potential formation of a SIG for the IEEE Computer Society for those with interest in games; on-the-ground international support for our ground-breaking game to end violence against women; and this article in the Chronicle for Higher Ed:

Results. We are driven in this current society for short-term results. No waiting. Instant rewards. More, more, more. Let me have it NOW! Hence the stress, the rudeness, the inhumanity of an airport. But have you ever looked at the babies and small children? People smile when they see them, and as I heard one woman say this morning deep in the security line “I’ll hold her for you!” Children seem to bring us back to our humanity. They are long–term.

It is for those babies that I am here in this airport giving up yet another weekend with those I love deepest.

Our Champlain students and EMC faculty and staff, guided by experts in change, have discovered the means that can make the world a less violent, more economically stable place for our children and youth to grow into. Seems like an awfully BIG promise doesn’t it? Perhaps but its a promise backed up by a solid plan.

Our solution is grounded in proven behavior theory, designed to engage boys at a pivotal age, enable them to see beyond immediate culture conditioning. It allows them to practice key behaviors to discover the rewards of positive behavior and uncover the imprisonments of negative behavior. The project is being linked to on-the-ground structures that can support individual choice for change. And it is to be launched by an international star who provides an inspirational role model.

Yes, I can see a world achievable within my lifetime where the status quo is one of peace and prosperity. One where nine year old girls are not sold or abducted for trade as sex slaves as described in “Half the Sky” or their mothers are not violently “disciplined” by their fathers (as we learned in Africa); a world in which engaging babies can grow up to be equal partners working side-by-side towards a positive future for their babies and for us all. A world in balance.

However here we are again, awaiting launch with delays impeding takeoff. We have funding that will get us to the launch of the game but for full impact we need but two more months of funding.

Can you see the peace achievable beyond the storm? Would you like to help us get above the clouds? Become a part of this project that can turn the tides on a world-view that allows baby girls, pre-teens, their sisters and their mothers to become victims of sex trafficking, maternal mortality and violence against women. Become a game-changer.

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