The Gulf Between Hawks And Doves

(04/10/2003)

Dear Editor

There seems to be a huge gulf between people nowadays, and it's growing wider every day. The "Hawks" banter with the "Doves" over the need for war, volleying insults and propaganda back and forth like tennis balls, feeling an increasing need to express themselves. It all makes for some great entertainment. But the unfortunate part is that we are ALL IN THIS TOGETHER. We are ALL World citizens, and no matter which path we take, no matter where we live, we all have to share this one globe. And no matter what our beliefs, we are all helpless to control what is happening...

It is all too easy to have opposing opinions in light of world events, and even easier to get all caught up in the "soap opera" of this particular war. The war in Iraq seems to be perfectly scripted. So much so that you can pretty much predict events before they take place. It has all the elements of a best selling novel or an Oscar winning movie, which I'm sure we'll all see very shortly at a theater near you... It's so convenient to sit by the sidelines in the comfort of your own living room, watching whichever brand of news you prefer, and rooting for the home team. One would assume, however, that if the tables were turned and we were attacked in OUR homes by warriors from another country that felt our leader was dangerous, that we too would fight like "savages" to protect our homes and families. (which seems much more likely now that our president has chosen to use "playground bully" tactics to settle his differences). Imagine sitting on the ground in front of what's left of your home with your mate or child dying in your arms. No amount of flag waving, or assuring ourselves that "the end justifies the means" would bring them back. And if you found yourself in that situation, and yet still felt that war was necessary and unavoidable "at any cost", then what makes your beliefs any different than the beliefs of those that you would seek to kill?

The warriors and the pacifists cannot agree, and never will. But real truth remains truth no matter how we disagree, no matter how many bombs are dropped, no matter how many innocent people are slaughtered. The truth is that until such a day that ALL citizens of this planet reject war and violence as a means to an end, that there will always be wars and destruction. It is inevitable. The mentality of violence as an alternative will not allow those of us who wish to live in a peaceful society to do so. And in this regard we are ALL victims.

It is unfortunate that Mr. Bush continues to preach about the virtues and strength of "American citizens" from such a warriors platform. Every time he does so he insults those hundreds of thousands of Americans who find that war and violence is neither necessary nor appropriate in a civilized world. Our technological advances are stunning, our knowledge in the fields of modern medicine and Science are amazing, and yet with respect to just getting along with our world neighbors, we are still in the dark ages. Anyone, regardless of nationality or religion, should be ashamed of themselves for embracing war and violence as an alternative. And our prayers should go out to ANYONE who is innocently subjected to the atrocity of war through no fault of their own. It is time to mourn EVERY death caused by the warriors mentality. And time now, more than ever, to work for peace.

Patsy Buvoltz