We live in a world which is unrecognizable from pre-9/11 times.  Extremists of all shades find emotional justification and distort people’s commitment to faith, democracy and civilization to carry out mayhem in the name of what they regard as sacred, and the great majority finds abhorrent.

The language of hate has taken over.  The very questioning of why this violence is taking place is regarded as treasonous and unpatriotic, even blasphemous by those with the power to wage these acts of terror.

The latest monstrosity in Paris must be condemned forcefully, but not allowed to justify a backlash against victims of violence escaping bloodshed and trying to reach Europe and Canada.  Our government should not be discouraged. As Canadians, we need to continue our humanitarian work with a balanced approach that will keep Canadians safe.

We must find a way to address the conflicts of the 21st century with contemporary understanding. Otherwise, the declarations of war and revenge will only bring more hate, more killing, more war and the vicious circle will continue until we destroy our sense of personal security and humanity with it.

There are no adequate words to express the outrage over the killing of innocent people anywhere.  But our outrage must not be selective.  No one should feel they can justify taking innocent lives be it in Syria, Iraq, Libya, Israel, Palestine, Sinai, Africa, New York or Paris.  We have seen both state and non-state terror and are committed to continue our efforts to ensure that  “Never Again” is a promise kept.

Wshould refuse to  play into the hands of those who would goad us into violence and the quicksand of mutual destruction and call for healing and justice for victims of intolerance everywhere.

Let us contribute whatever we can to create a world where all human life is precious regardless of nationality, creed or color.