Posted by Irresponsibility
The repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” is a good day for equality. But it shouldn’t be a day of celebration. It is right and proper that men and women of any orientation, colour, or creed, be allowed to serve honourably, but they serve a dishonoured system. I just read Jarhead, ex-Marine Anthony Swofford’s account of his service during the first Gulf War. He writes:
There is talk that many Vietnam films are antiwar, that the message is war is inhumane…. But actually, Vietnam war films are all pro-war, no matter what the supposed message, what Kubrick or Coppola or Stone intended. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson in Omaha or San Francisco or Manhattan will watch the films and weep and decide once and for all that war is inhumane and terrible… but Corporal Johnson at Camp Pendleton and Sergeant Johnson at Travis Air Force Base… and Lance Corporal Swofford at Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Base watch the same films and are excited by them, because the magic brutality of the fims celebrates the terrible and despicable beauty of their fighting skills. Fight, rape, war, pillage, burn…. It doesn’t matter how many Mr. and Mrs. Johnsons are antiwar — the actual killers who know how to use the weapons are not.
By all means, we should support equality, but we dare not forget that military’s sole purpose is slaughter. This is no cause for a tickertape parade. The way to truly honour human dignity is to not devise governments that require people to kill each other and be killed.