Thursday, October 18, 2007

War -- What is it good for?

It is decades and yet just a moment since the summer of 1968. Young men I had sat beside in high school classerooms, had watched them throw spit balls or carve their names in the wooden study hall desks or catch a football out on the field of play -- they were dying, or being wounded, in Vietnam. I sat quietly and said nothing.

Against the war? Oh yes, I was totally against the war. Just hearing the anti-war songs again brought it all back. Every element of it. The letters from my fiance who volunteered to fight in Vietnam -- he thought it was brave. I thought him a coward for not standing up against a war. I was the coward. I kept silent and watched the list grow. The names of the dead: John Hale, Dave Cox, Neil Mason, the list so long, all killed. They fought bravely, they faced whatever was thrown at them. Today's soldiers do no less. They are brave and take duty seriously. Our leaders have no sense of duty. They put this brave band of brothers and sisters into harms way for ill-thought out goals.

Silently I watched others return wounded in mind and body. Stood silent as I watched their lives fall apart through the ensuing years because they were stuck in that awful jungle battlefield. We offer so little in return for their lives. Walter Reed Hospital reflects our lack of respect.

Today I speak out through the words of this video. Not my creative construction -- but if I could be so creative this is what I would have wanted to make. The sounds may reflect back to a Vietnam era of protest -- but the pictures clearly show that war is no good -- not yesterday nor today.

Some things we MUST fight for. To protest the war in Iraq is to fight for integrity, humanity. And in the protest of this war, in trying to find global agreement rather than discord, hopefully, America can find its moral compass.

1 comment:

Rick Bylina said...

"Absolutely nothing."