This is Beckley and this is ten! Ten wonderful Beckley posts! AH-HA-HAAAA!
I am exhausted. There’s still a ton of work to do around Haven and on top of all that, I’ve had to visit with the new citizens from the UAS. There were a couple small brush fires to put out too. Normally, the policing force here would deal with the fights and arguments, but since I’m to be the new UAS liaison, they figured I should get my feet wet. Plus the Council is busy with the post-war effort and everyone wants to keep working on keeping Haven secure.
So I’ve been visiting with the new settlers, talking about what they can expect here, what they need, that kind of thing. Josh has talked about how the citizens of the UAS were fed misinformation, but it really is incredible to see their prejudices melt away. These people were told all number of things, that the Union attacked first, that we kidnapped their people. They were told that we were using children as shields at our weapons depots and staging grounds. I think that’s how the UAS government justified their actions when news leaked out that they were gassing and poisoning entire settlements, including children.
I’ve found that a good number of the UAS citizens didn’t join us because they recognized all the lies, but rather because they were beaten and just wanted to survive. For some, surrender was out of desperation and they thought it was likely they’d just be executed, but at least they had a chance to live. Now they’re seeing how things really are and they’ve gone from being broken and believing they betrayed their friends in the UAS, to actually accepting their new home and realizing that the Union was not to blame for the war.
A number of Haven citizens are accepting of their new UAS neighbors. A bit cautiously, perhaps. But that makes sense. The problem is that this war, while devastating, was not something that the Union needed to stop right away. We could have kept going. We didn’t look to the peace out of desperation, so a substantial minority of residents here don’t feel motivated to really accept anyone. And that minority is vocal, let me tell you. So I’m doing what I can to keep the peace. There have been a smattering of fist fights and one or two beatings. A small amount of food went missing, which happens from time to time, but now that gets blamed right on our new neighbors. Which it may have been, since a number are still used to starving every day.
I’ve tried to organize some common projects that can integrate the Haven and UAS folks. Josh mentioned how training together helps. So does old-fashioned work. One of the areas that has a high concentration of UAS was vandalized, so I got a group of Havenites and UASers together and we all washed and sanded the graffiti out. Not sure what the vandal used for graffiti, now that I think about it, but I guess that’s not important. What is important is that having our people help clean not only fosters cooperation, but it shows the UAS that we take responsibility for the actions of our more hateful people, and also forces us to confront our own prejudice. Over all, I think that projects like that have helped the two sides come together. Nothing can connect people quite like taking a lunch break after spending hours in the blistering sun washing UAS GO HOM off the side of a building. Oh, that wasn’t a typo, by the way. The vandal, whoever they were, can’t spell.
Over all, getting people to see reason isn’t that hard. You just have to come at it the right way. I find it’s best to come at these issues like you’re consoling someone through grief. Seeing the UAS here is hard when the cost of this war is still so fresh. But we have to deal with our losses, the same way we did when The Fall first occurred. The way we did when marauders were granted amnesty. It was hard at first, but those of us who are functional were able to do it. Those who didn’t are still stuck, brooding and fuming over the injustice of it all. Well, in the grand scheme of things, allowing a group of people who are starving and misinformed into our fold is probably the most just thing that’s happened since The Fall. So let’s all just take a step back and relax. And if you must spew hate, please at least be grammatically correct.