"But war, in a good cause, is not the greatest evil which a nation can suffer. War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks nothing worth a war, is worse. When a people are used as mere human instruments for firing cannon or thrusting bayonets, in the service and for the selfish purposes of a master, such war degrades a people. A war to protect other human beings against tyrannical injustice – a war to give victory to their own ideas of right and good, and which is their own war, carried on for an honest purpose by their free choice – is often the means of their regeneration. A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. As long as justice and injustice have not terminated their ever-renewing fight for ascendancy in the affairs of mankind, human beings must be willing, when need is, to do battle for the one against the other."

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Berkeley

After some reflection, I decided to pull my last post about the Berkeley city council's decision to evict the Marine Corps from their local recruiting station. What I said, out of anger and disgust, did not ultimately honor the uniform I wear, the American values I volunteered to defend, or the morals I live by. Make no mistake: I have nothing but contempt for Berkeley's mayor, city council, and the citizenry that elected such people. I maintain that they are an enclave of moonbats from the planet Pluto; I'd opt to send them there in the hopes of improving our own planet, but Pluto's had a rough year and doesn't deserve further punishment. Berkeley's denizens may well represent the worst of everything that America has to offer. Yet condemning America's worst need not involve sullying her best, a line which I believe I crossed yesterday. The self-righteous dwellers of that narcissistic little conclave may be petty and small, but the Marine Corps is not. I might have talked the talk about leaving the burning townsfolk to their fate yesterday, but in reality that's not how it would play out, as that would violate my oath as an officer and my responsibilities as a human being. Our ROE out here has us bandaging up wounded enemy fighters and treating them as we'd treat our own wounded; the same goes for those who hate us back home, as they are human beings (though I'm not sure they're worthy of the title of Americans). So yes, come fire, flood, earthquake, or terrorist attack, I will strap on my helicopter and honor this uniform by helping everyone, regardless of how ungrateful they are. It is very sad, however, to be attacked by people so comfortable and isolated from the world's woes that they've forgotten that those woes are kept at bay by the very group they seek to banish. Perhaps, someday, Berkeleyites can see the irony in telling the Marines to go to hell, when our whole job is to keep THEM from going there.

1 comment:

CJ said...

E--
If you were any more of a gentleman I'd have to smack you... lots of love and watch your back.
CJ