By Kenneth Justice
~ Last week at coffee I sat with a Jewish lawyer friend of mine and we were talking about the ongoing conflict in the Middle East,
“Want me to tell you how to get the United States to quit involving itself in all of these conflicts in the Middle East; instate a draft and all the suburban kids will start protesting like they did in the 60’s and the President won’t be so quick to send troops anywhere ever again” he said
My lawyer friend’s idea is that because the military is voluntary, all the young adults who don’t join the armed services are lulled into never standing up and voicing their opinion. But if there was a mandated draft that forced every young adult in the United States to the join the military, there would be a national movement to end war.
The United States is an interesting nation. If you’ve ever traveled to Washington D.C. or driven throughout the East Coast, you’ll see a massive number of war memorials. In fact, every single state and major city throughout the United States has war memorials; monuments, buildings, statue, and other such edifices devoted to talking about the wars the USA has been involved itself.
Almost nowhere in the United States are monuments to men and women who have devoted themselves to lives of being peacemakers.
It’s written, “Blessed are the peacemakers” yet for every small statue of someone like Dr. Martin Luther King, there are a thousand statues and monuments devoted to reminding us we have been a warring country.
It’s an interesting society we live in; people like General MacArthur and Eisenhower become national heroes and even President…..but why don’t we celebrate men and women like Plato and Socrates? Why don’t we celebrate philosophers and great thinkers who’ve devoted themselves to thinking and writing about things of a higher nature?
Walking around Washington, D.C. you’re impressed with the magnitude of the WWII, WWI and Vietnam War memorials. They are colossal structures which impress upon the viewer the idea that war is something the United States is good at. But is this something the USA should be proud of; being good at war???
No matter where you live, whether in the United States or somewhere in Europe, no doubt there are statues and monuments somewhere in your vicinity devoted to war. The next time you see them, remember the verse, “Blessed are the peacemakers” and see if you can find any evidence that your community celebrates peacemakers…..my guess is you’ll come up empty.
Just a few thoughts as I sipped my coffee this morning,
Categories: Culture & Society