The constant question
When in uniform out in public, invariably someone will ask me if I am for or against the war.
War is an unfortunate side effect to life. At the heart of any drama or any segment of reality is conflict. And war is sort of the ultimate solution to the need for conflict. But I think people often fall in love with the romance of war — of heroes and stalwart hearts fighting against evil and the unrelenting enemy. Men charge off to glory for hearth and home — all that business.
But that’s not war, that’s a fairy tale. I don’t view my time of service as some sort of lottery ticket to heroism, where my number could come up and, bingo, I’m somebody that needs to be sung about.
There was a quote in the recent movie, “Sin City,” that stuck with me.
The saying goes, “It’s time to prove to your friends that you’re worth a damn. Sometimes that means dying, sometimes that means killing a whole lot of people.”
Now, morbidity aside, there’s something to that. There comes a time, though all the rants and ravings about how things should be, that a man chooses to stand in the breach and weather the storm of life and conflict.
Look at the emperor penguins, for a quick aside. While hanging out in one of the coldest regions of the world, they take turns rotinsidefrom the insdie to the outside of their huddle, enduring the fierce cold. If those on the outside stayed there, they would die from the winds. But they all do their time, they all serve their stint in the hell they’re in.
There’s also something to that.
This war won’t be won, it can only be endured.
I guess that’s as good of an explanation as to why I serve as any. It’s a sort of romantic reason, so I suppose I’ve just embellished what I urge people to avoid, but I’m at a loss.
Do I agree with the war? What does it matter? I’m a soldier. I don’t have to worry about stuff like that. It’s a citizen’s place to argue and discuss…all I have to do is get shot at. Pretty straightforward, and arguably better than politics.