“Have those people who support this war ever been at the receiving end of a bomb? Do they know what war is? War is: your house is gone, no water, no electricity, your roads are blown up and….your family is dead.”
The conversation started not about war, but about Peace.
We had just come from a planning meeting to discuss planning the plans for a “Peace Event.”
I am usually restless, squirming in my chair, at peace meetings.
This night was a particular challenge, as a decision needed to be made as to whether this event was going to be about ‘Creating peace within ourselves, as a way to greater peace’ or ‘peacefully demonstrating against our military culture’.
It was a lively discussion, no decision was reached.
It was the conversation afterwards during dinner that resonated.
D.F., my 87y/o WWII veteran friend, knows struggle; WWII, the Labor Movement, Civil Rights, he has been around.
Over dinner he puzzled, “Have those who support this war ever been at the receiving end of a bomb? Do they know what war is? War is: your house is gone, no water, no electricity, your roads are blown up and….your family is dead.”
He wasn’t looking for an answer more stating reality for those of us who did not truly know war….which was everyone at the table besides him. After a complicated meeting about Peace I think he didn’t want us to lose sight of why we were doing it.
“Sometimes people use the call to inner peace as a reason not to take action against injustice, let’s not do that,” he added.
Later he suggested, “We don’t really know how to act together as a society. The Cold War scared people, taught them to shut up, not question or challenge government, and look where it has gotten us.”
Then he went on to ask/state, “How do you hold your candidate accountable when he falters in a way that improves his candidacy and does not give ammunition to his opponent?”
We did not come up with a concrete answer to this question over chopped steak (his) and a veggie reuben (mine).
As we left he smiled at me, wonderful lines of wisdom creasing his face. “Call tomorrow and we’ll work on the unanswered question,” he said with a wink.
What is the point of this diary? I am not sure, it is my first on this site. I am just happy to share some insights from a wise old friend with anyone willing to listen.