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Nonviolence Playlets - compiled by Walter Wink - page 28 / 29

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dare touch the Muslims.”

Muslim Leader 2:  All of us stand united.  Abbot Gyan Das, you are the

true protector of the Hindu faith. You helped create such an atmosphere

that even the minuscule number of VHP supporters in Ayodhya were

hesitant to join the VHP openly.

Hindu Leader 2:  Ayodhya has rejected the VHP and we wanted them to

understand this in no uncertain terms.

Muslim Leader 1:  I am most of all relieved that their project to build

a Hindu temple on the site of our razed Muslim mosque has received no

public support.

Abbot:  Now I must go to Lucknow to try to persuade the chief minister

there to stop the VHP.  Meanwhile, you must all work together to build

local defense squads made up of equal numbers of Hindus and Muslims for

mutual nonviolent protection.

Hindu Leader 3:  Perhaps the most significant proof of the strength of

the Ayodhya resistance came in the fact that very few of those who

attended the rally hailed from Ayodhya. One official even went so far as

to observe that there was very little local participation at all. People

mostly came from other states.  The worst that Ayodhya feared did not

come to pass.

Abbot:  We can’t put our feet up yet.  We mustn’t forget that the

elections are coming soon.  They will be drumming up violence in Ayodhya

again. They will organize riots, and innocents will be killed. We have

no time to rest. The country has to wake up to this new challenge. They

want the country to be polarized along ethnic lines and nobody is going

to come to the common people's rescue. We have to act now and fast.

(All exit.)

(Source: “Nonviolence in the Arena,” Fellowship (January/February 2004):

_____; conflated with Dylan Mathews, “Saint Xavier’s Social Service

Society,” War Prevention Works: 50 Stories of People Resolving Conflict

(Oxford: Oxford Research Group, 2001), 22-23.)

Taming the Tank

Setting:  Dennis and Sheila are seated in the living room reading.  John

(age 6) comes rushing in with a family friend in tow.

John:  Momma, Daddy, Uncle  _______ took me to McDonald’s and look what

I got!  They are passing out toy tanks for free and I got one!  They

give them out with the French fries.

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