Where I stand

John Scalzi says, “It’s not exactly a good time to be a pacifist in America,” and he is right. I hadn’t ever thought of myself as a pacifist, just someone who doesn’t really like war and fighting and death, but this week has forced me to think about who I am and what I believe in. Am I a coward? No. Anyone who knows me well would have to know that I would risk life and limb to save human life, they know I would defend them at any cost. The key word is defend. Defend yourself against immediate threats and use your intelligence to prevent future ones.
This is not to say that deep inside me I don’t have the base urge to find those responsible and tear them apart. On the other hand, government is better than that, they are not supposed to give in to our animal side, but deliver us from all that is base, common and popular.
The people of Afghanistan do not support this action; they did not put it in motion. One man and his organization and maybe some other organizations did, but not the mothers and the fathers and the children of a terribly poor, drought-ridden country. Instead of the clinical ‘Collateral Damage’ that would be the result of long range ‘smart’ missiles, let’s take every single human victim in the target area and shoot them in the head. The people who start this war should not get the comfort of ‘Collateral Damage’, but should have to take each person, each mother, each father, each child look them straight in the eye and put a bullet in their head. The end result is the same, the people are still dead, but you don’t get to lie in bed smug with the satisfaction that you did something good today. You get to go to bed and dream of the tear-soaked faces, the unanswered questions and the please for mercy.
You are right, the terrorists didn’t have to consider each of their victims before they set this terrible plan in motion. Are we then just terrorists with nicer offices and better spin control?
And, yes, John, I would drive that ambulance to the front lines. I would do everything I could to save the lives in front of me. Not just our brave soldiers, but the ‘enemy’ as well. If I could I would save them all.
On a side note, if we as a nation are so ready to fight terrorism where it starts, perhaps we need to open our eyes to the School of the Americas and the terrorists it turns out to serve our own nationalistic and ‘democratic’ purposes.