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AMERICA'S VIOLENCE CONTRADICTION

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This photo is from a Junior-ROTC "field day" at a school in the south. The article along with the photo said, in part, "Maj. Hicks speaks to the eager group of Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps Cadets about what it means to be a Cavalryman and what the Cavalry does."

I remember the Cavalry. They were the ones who hunted the Native Americans down and killed them. Now they do it in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.

We weep and wail and wring our hands when domestic terrorists kill innocent people, as was done this past weekend in Tucson, Arizona. But each and every day our kids all over the nation are being brainwashed about the joys of violence, the thrill of war, the glory of killing the "enemy" and few blink an eye. People somehow separate the killing done by our "hero" soldiers from the senseless random slaughter on our streets at home.

But these can't be separated. They are linked. They come from the same wellspring. They come from America's addiction to war and violence.

We glorify the gun and we glorify the shooter. But then, just now and then, the nation says (as in the case in Arizona), "No, not this time. This violence was not good." But to those brought up listening to the overwhelming public support for guns and glory the messages are just a twisted jumble of confusion. The loudest bang is the one that gets internalized by the majority of the citizenry.

It could change, but we'd have to make a serious national commitment to step away from the bar stool where we keep taking just one more drink of the hot red blood of violence. It could change, but we'd have to keep our president home instead of thrilling in his secret holiday trips to visit the troops in Iraq or Afghanistan to remind them that the nation is behind their killing of innocent civilians in endless war. It could change, but the Congress would have to cut the military budget and transfer the money into mental health programs for those who are living close to the razor's edge and are just one radio talk show host's angry rant about "big government" away from a violent rampage.


It could all change, but each of us would have to do more than shake our head in disgust and say to ourselves, "This is a crazy country." We'd have to step up and take some responsibility, do something to publicly express our deep frustration and concern, and demand that we stop putting our children at the trigger end of machine guns.

We'd have to connect the dots between "random gun violence" and our national obsession with occupation and killing people around the world who happen to sit on land that is wanted, for whatever reason, by multi-national corporations.

We could do something, if we..............................

 

Bruce Gagnon is the Coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space.

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I certainly agree that there is ... by Dan Suilem on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 1:01:40 PM
From birth to grave, Americans are caught-up in co... by myklsamu on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 1:13:18 PM
Well said Mykl....very well said... by Bruce K. Gagnon on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 1:16:37 PM
but what you say is so sadly true.... by Allen Oliver on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 4:06:47 PM
Yes, the sight of a President decrying violence, w... by Dwight on Thursday, Jan 13, 2011 at 7:37:25 PM
entertainment or are we conditioned to enjoy it in... by Mark Adams JD/MBA on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 3:31:13 PM
...to add that most people are completely sucked i... by Icthelite on Thursday, Jan 13, 2011 at 10:37:13 AM
I think our problem with political violence goes m... by Bob F on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 3:25:25 PM
This nation's largest, and most costly, export is ... by Robert P. Philipps on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 4:50:44 PM
The shooter who killed and wounded so many people ... by Timmie Stockman on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 7:19:02 PM
...nor should we trivialize the effect of inflamma... by Bia Winter on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 12:28:31 PM
Where is that lady from? Another planet.... by Debbie S on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 7:56:14 PM
Yes we kill as a nation. In fact Obama made it leg... by Robert Gartner on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 10:40:28 PM
Military has control of the country, and may-be it... by Debbie S on Tuesday, Jan 11, 2011 at 11:36:53 PM
They'd rather come down on peaceful protesters.... by Bia Winter on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 12:31:08 PM
Bia,I know that, but it is just wishful thinking. ... by Debbie S on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 2:06:04 PM
... at making the trouble they do, And LYING to US... by Bia Winter on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 6:20:57 PM
at it Bia.....you never know the minds you might t... by Bruce K. Gagnon on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 6:25:15 PM
No tea-baggers were the cause of Giffords gun shot... by Debbie S on Wednesday, Jan 12, 2011 at 7:50:26 PM