Letters to the Editor

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WAR: What lessons do we teach our children?

Letter by Reneé Díaz de León Harvey, Puyallup on Jan. 19, 2012 at 1:49 pm | 66 Comments »
January 19, 2012 2:01 pm

Re: “War – ancient and modern – creates terrible moral contradictions” (TNT, 1-18).

I mourn the children of our country because they are being taught that war is necessary to secure freedom, that to hate and kill is their duty. We offer no options, insisting that war is society’s only choice. This, we tell our trusting children, is what defines patriotic citizens.

While our leaders may decide we must defend our country, it seems we are intoxicated with the blood of revenge. How many must be injured or killed before we choke on the horrific consequences of our actions?

We need to face the bitter truth that even if we believe it necessary to protect ourselves, when we main and kill we also inflict grave wounds on our hearts and souls. We stain the consciousness of our identity, our culture. These are the truths we do not teach our children.

Did the soldiers who cheered the maimed Taliban fighter as he died really believe they were cheering for their lives? What story will these men tell their children — one of heroism, guilt, remorse?

Many will mock my solution and think me naive. I am reminded of Dr. King, Gandhi and Mandela. Though requiring a different kind of courage and an understanding of spiritual principles, there are other choices.

I pray we teach the children who will lead our country that each of us has the power to envision peace and actualize it through our thoughts and actions. At least let us be honest and teach them they do have the power to choose.

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