Political Weblogging

Long haul

Sheila Lennon sent a note and posted that she’s dropping out of the war:

War plus anti-war does not equal peace.

Pro-war and anti-war blogs are two sides of the same coin. War and anti-war fight each other with hearts and minds and furious typing.

On the streets, anger fuels protest, and is met with anger.

The potential for tearing our country apart again is already shaping up: “Support the war, support the troops” vs. “Support the troops – Bring them home.”

I’m dropping out of the war. I don’t want war in my living room any more. I don’t want to give it my attention. I can’t stop it, can’t change it, won’t fight it. All I can do is live as peacefully as I can, without sucking in its virtual fumes.

I can understand where Sheila’s coming from, except that none of us can drop out of the war. Especially the Iraqis. Especially the soldiers. But Sheila isn’t talking about dropping out of the war – she’s talking about not feeding the frenzy of pro- and anti-war rhetoric.

How does it support the troops to accuse others of being traitors, to make fun of people who disagree, to feed a constant anger? What’s peaceful about a peace movement populated by people screaming “I hate you!” and throwing rocks?

I agree with Sheila, I want no part of the war she describes. However, dropping out of the rhetoric war and not writing about the real one are two different things. Our writing, or not writing, about the war isn’t going to make it go any faster or prevent any people from being killed. However, writing about the war can help us resolve our anger, frustrations, and fears. It can also help us understand how we got here – to come to terms with the war and our own involvement and responsibilities. With a little respect and patience, it can also help us understand others’ viewpoint as well.

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