Today, a reminder of the importance of Beginning with the least:
233. Building social friendship does not only call for rapprochement between groups who took different sides at some troubled period of history, but also for a renewed encounter with the most impoverished and vulnerable sectors of society. For peace “is not merely absence of war but a tireless commitment – especially on the part of those of us charged with greater responsibility – to recognize, protect and concretely restore the dignity, so often overlooked or ignored, of our brothers and sisters, so that they can see themselves as the principal protagonists of the destiny of their nation”. [Meeting with the Authorities, Civil Society and the Diplomatic Corps, Maputo, Mozambique (5 September 2019): L’Osservatore Romano, 6 September 2019, p. 6]
The most important aspect of this involves the promotion of human dignity. How does this happen? A dutiful and intentional respect for those who might be overlooked. In the US, for example, that includes young people, especially young women, and certainly people of color. Not only is the biased targeting of non-whites, especially young black men a serious injustice, but it is actually a traitorous act against the long-term interest of the nation. Misbehaving law enforcement personnel from officers on the street to judges actually undercut respect for law among citizens and promote disorder in communities.
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