Saturday, July 31, 2010

A Metro West News letter writer, Lloyd Kaye, has written an editorial entitled: "Use Tax Dollars for Peace." It was well constructed and says the following:

I have seen many films and documentaries about wars. I remember seeing the first one back in 1968 in a large auditorium with about 700 other teenagers, watching a single B-52 bomber as its bomb bay doors opened and bombs started to drop on Vietnamese villages. From one bomber, not 10, not 30, not 70, not 85, but what I found out years later as many as 110 bombs from one B-52 bomber on one run.

I found, in that moment, that what we were doing as a nation was criminal; that bombing villages of woman and children and old men in their homes was a crime beyond the blood and burnt and melted flesh that resulted from it.

Yesterday at the Ashland Library I witnessed a documentary that went beyond that film. Watching a film about the children of Gaza was almost too much for me. It was too much to know my tax dollars are paying for shrapnel embedded in the brains of teenage Arab children; that Jewish and Arab children cannot live in peace and enjoy their lives because of selfish men with agendas and dreams based on blood and money and of empires of the past.

I have given my government too many dollars for too many lies, and too many children have died too many horrible, lonely destructive deaths since my own birth.
I'm tired of those lies. It's time to end the war machine and to spend those dollars on the great problems of today which are all easy to solve if we focus on building and cleaning our world the world of the 21st century.

Over and over, peace comes only after too many people have died for reasons that never legitimize those deaths. Too many have died in the Middle East and I'm not interested in the reasons any more. I have heard them all since sitting in Hebrew school in that same year of 1968, the year two men of peace were murdered and a president elected who lied to Americans and bombed Cambodians and Vietnamese by the millions. There is a peace in the Middle East, and it is attainable.

It's time to put my tax dollars to work for peace. I will do what it takes to stop these endless, illegal wars.

I gave his piece Another Look: It is hard to argue with anything Mr. Kaye has written. I understand and empathize with all of it. Documentary is a powerful journalistic tool to actually show what history and, in its specificity, war perpetrates. I, too, remember my first, my VERY first documentary about war. It was at age 10 shown at the St. George Theater in downtown Framingham. It was about, of course, since it was around 1958, what the Nazis had done and most specifically showed the dead bodies of the Jews of Auschwitz and Dachau. It showed HEAPS of skeletal remains of bodies upon bodies being bulldozed by Allied soldiers because of the stench and disease they posed. It also showed the ovens where Nazis, in their haste to get rid of the evidence, burned the bodies of my brethren. Multiply that and get six million so that that number becomes unfathomable and burns like a branding iron into the synapses of ones brain. As a ten year old, I became literally physically nauseated as I gagged and nearly threw up at my seat. I will NEVER forget that film because it introduced me to the history which was responsible for the horror.

Since that time I have honed my political beliefs and do, despite what some may think, place myself left of center. That single event would ensure I always remained so as I could see the right, had little humanitarian heart.

One must, I think, though, as Mr. Kaye says, play the ball where it lies and not return to the same tired excuses one after the other keeping a nation perpetually at war for the aggrandizement of a few. It is heinous thing.

Still, as much as I am opposed to war as a means of dispute resolution one MUST understand what is a real threat and distinguish that from what is not. I LOATH what happened in Gaza to the innocents. I wish it never happened. I wish for once, too, however, a documentary could be shown about the thousands upon thousands of innocents that fundamentalist religious brutality and immorality has perpetrated on old men, women, and children, sitting at mosques, walking on a street, attending a funeral, sitting in a school and hundreds of other benign locations where religious extremism perpetrates its dastardly deeds upon innocent others.

I say to Mr. Kaye I understand your feelings BUT you cannot be blind (or you can to your peril) to the depth and malicious destruction that the radical fundamentalist wants now to bestow upon our culture, our nation and even to the west at large. It cannot be denied. Our struggle has morphed. It does not matter what the US or Israel has done in the past.

What DOES matter is that if all the things for which you may want to indict the US and Israel did not exist do you think for one minute NOW that those who hate this country would cease and desist from what they want to do even IF it means exploding a radiological device or biological agent to kill and sicken millions?

I suspect not. If every Jew in Israel lived in Alaska instead of Israel do you think the Middle East would be a bastion of peace? I HIGHLY doubt it. To deny the murderous quality of the radical fundamentalists’ intentions is to place your head in the sand and risk your life as well as ours. They will NEVER stop no matter how much you protest because it now, for them, is a religious cause which gives meaning to their lives and madness to their hearts. We are in an existential nightmare and there is, as I see it, literally no way out.

I agree with ALL you have said, Mr. Kaye, and yet I ask this question: how many Islamic fundamentalists throughout the world would lay down their arms even IF we became the most peaceful non-violent nation on the face of the earth. My guess: FEW!
Do you Cindy take Helen?: I posted my opinion about a letter on another blogging news site which involved the topic of homosexual marriage. I wrote the following:

The entries about gay marriage on this site seem to be less negative. More are positive toward homosexual marriages and they do well articulating evidence to back up their opinions. I possibly am in error but I believe this issue is losing steam for a number of reasons: (1) there are many more important issues to address like the economy, war, and oil (2) the generation emerging is MUCH more accepting of alternative lifestyles and homosexuality in general because homosexuals are more visible. (3) The younger generation knows more gay people and more gays have come out within their own families than ever before. It is obvious homosexuality is a universal phenomenon. It appears in all cultures and in other species as well. It is a sexual variation NOT a pathology and through science the courts are able to see that the major ingredients in the successful raising of children are the LOVE, caring and support of them they receive in the home.

Many pathological heterosexual marriages spawn troubled, dysfunctional, and psychologically impaired children. Heterosexuality is NO yardstick for good parenting. In fact, because homosexuals have to go out of their way to have children, the children are wanted and are not simply conceived after frivolous activity. Moreover, I submit, while abuse exists among gays, it does so less often because the relationship between the partners is biologically more equal. Simply put, men are stronger than woman and easily can abuse them and do.

I will go out on a limb and say, generally, if one takes the factor of children OUT of the rationale for heterosexual marriage each sex has more in common with their own gender than they do with the opposite one. (Before anyone screams at me I KNOW this is not true for everyone.) One hears many women say I want a man to have the characteristics of my female best friend. She may not be attracted to women or want to sleep with them but women often like the qualities of other women better than they do the qualities of their own husbands or male partners.

The sexes are INTRINSICALLY and psychologically different and many would rather share, can share and do share those psychological intimacies with members of their own sex. The fact that heterosexuals are together is primarily biological for the making of children. Heterosexual reproduction reforms and evolves DNA weeding out the genetically mutant bad genes while keeping the good ones. It ensures biological variation and diversity of the species but it does NOT ensure the qualitative dimension of happiness.