Debate and Discussion

Would you defend your country
ozoneocean at 2:40AM, Dec. 23, 2006
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Blargh, if I was in the US I'd have no problem adhering to all Mapaghimagsik's ideas there, but I wouldn't “take up arms”; I'd leave the country. :)

As for my own land, well PhatScurl's question doesn't mention anything about defending your country from invasion, he's just talking about fighting if you get called up. On that score, did Vietnam teach people nothing? I can talk on that subject because Australians were drafted to go over there and die just like you Yanks. I thank goodness my Grandmother had enough political connections to get my dad into the army reserve and driving tanks around in the Australian bush instead of wasting his life for an illegal and meaningless war like so many other young Australian and American men in the 70's and 60's who were “drafted” like he was.

I would defend my country from invasion, but I wouldn't take up arms for any other reason. I would defend my country because I like the people in the community I live in. I would fight to preserve their lives and my world.

As for the numerous mindless comments about the French, don't be silly. They fought bravely in WW2, even before Dunkirk, and especially afterwards when men and women joined the resistance during German occupation; they suffered terrible retribution. And the Free French were especially heroic, fighting to free their captured country from the outside! If you're talking about taking up arms for one's country, the French should be an example to all!

Interesting comments about countries not winning wars without assistance. Well, the US has a long history of war and invasion, but not many unassisted victories… Tripoli? Mexico? The Native American tribes? Some Spanish occupation forces? In all the big modern ones there has been a LOT of help, (little fights like Panama and Grenada were a walk in the park). And as for the war of independence, without the Spanish and the French harassing the English elsewhere, my US friends would still be spelling colour the same way as I do. :)
 
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lothar at 6:03AM, Dec. 23, 2006
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ozoneocean
Blargh, if I was in the US I'd have no problem adhering to all Mapaghimagsik's ideas there, but I wouldn't “take up arms”; I'd leave the country. :)
that's what i did !

Nationality is kinda like religion, just cuz you're born into it doesn't meen you have to stick to it. That said, i would defend Japan, but they prolly would't let me !
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mapaghimagsik at 11:51AM, Dec. 23, 2006
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ozoneocean
On that score, did Vietnam teach people nothing?

Sure it did, but we yanks disagree with each other (and probably much of the world) as to what those lessons were.

So the US government (and the pentagon) learned:
1) A draft will make people protest. Avoid having at all costs
2) The media must be managed.
3) Its not enough to spread democracy, you must make sure the people fear the outside enough to need you.
4) Don't call it “escalation” call it “surge” oy.

This is why there is a branch in the pentagon which is watching out for ‘domestic threats’ This was also done during Vietnam, but we're doing things much sooner.

I think one of the really important things people are missing is that wars are very complicated things, and the battlefield of modern times is vastly different than those of yore.

For example, it used to be killing your enemy was important. During Vietnam, we learned that killing wasn't nearly as valuable as seriously wounding your enemy. Why? Because if you kill a solider, you incapasitate one person. Wounding can not only incapasitate another (a medit, or two) it also requires health care infrastructure to save that soliers life. So, wounding ties up more resources, and on the modern battlefield, is more damaging to the enemy.

Most people already get this. Its one of the reason the M16 bullet tumbles. (hmm my family talks *way* too much about the military)

Anyway, the next level of abstraction is economic cost. We as an economy support the military (perhaps too much so, but that's another discussion entirely). We can win every battle on the ground. No military on earth has the raw firepower and the committment to use is like the United State Military.

However, just to look at that as the means to victory misses not only the lessons of Vietnam, but the lessons of Kosevo, where the US (UN) was using half million dollar missiles to destroy mock tanks made with $20 of paint and lumber.

America will not suffer a military defeat from Iraq. It will suffer an economic defeat as I have read a very interesting milestone has been quietly passed (This tidbit isn't as verified as I like, and I'm digging into it more):

America is currently spending more on the interest on the money it has borrowed than is taking in through new loans.

If true, this is a very critical tipping point. It makes my inner economist shriek with horror.



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Lords_of_Darkness at 11:46AM, Jan. 1, 2007
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I have to agree with subcultured in that I would DEFEND not help DESTROY. I haven't studied curent events but from what I know, I wouldn't support the War in Iraq. Maybe once we find Osama and he starts more shit with us, them I'll pick up my Sniper, till then, I wont.But, whatever president makes a decision to do what they think will better our country and make everyone pissed at them(doesn't matter what president, what wing they are from, they will still get Praised and Hated, I hope that EVERYONE CAN SEE THIS AND QUIT YELLING AT ONE MAN, IT DOESN'T MATTER WHOSE IN OFFICE, PEOPLE WILL STILL BE PISSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!), I don't see why we can so worked up about something that is Enevitable. Seriously, a country that came in the world 200 years ago, and now “owns the world” as some people would say, America (my country) has to fall some time, and when it happens, I wont be suprised.
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lothar at 12:12PM, Jan. 1, 2007
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Lords_of_Darkness
I have to agree with subcultured in that I would DEFEND not help DESTROY. I haven't studied curent events but from what I know, I wouldn't support the War in Iraq. Maybe once we find Osama and he starts more shit with us, them I'll pick up my Sniper, till then, I wont.But, whatever president makes a decision to do what they think will better our country and make everyone pissed at them(doesn't matter what president, what wing they are from, they will still get Praised and Hated, I hope that EVERYONE CAN SEE THIS AND QUIT YELLING AT ONE MAN, IT DOESN'T MATTER WHOSE IN OFFICE, PEOPLE WILL STILL BE PISSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!), I don't see why we can so worked up about something that is Enevitable. Seriously, a country that came in the world 200 years ago, and now “owns the world” as some people would say, America (my country) has to fall some time, and when it happens, I wont be suprised.

maybe if you had studied current events a little more you wouldn't be saying that! it does matter , A LOT , who is in office !!! yea, clinton wasn't sucjh a great president either, but at least he wasn't a tool for a group of CRAZIES bent on world domination ( heres something you might want to look up - P.N.A.C. )
America (the country based on the constitution ) doesn't “own the world” . Multinational corporations “Own the world” Look it up !
The US is 230 years old !
“has to fall sometime” WTF ? if somebody came up to you with a gun and said “hey i'm gunna blow your head off right now , don't be surprised , you gotta die sometime !” how would you feel ?
That's INSANE logic ! and also very LAZY !!!!!! this kind of thinking is WHY America is fukd !
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Lords_of_Darkness at 12:19PM, Jan. 1, 2007
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I guess you didn't understand what I meant when I said it doesn't matter whose in office. I'm and it does but the fact is is that no matter how good they are, there will still be people that all they want to do is to bash them. And when I said America “owns the world”, wasn't my opinion, rather about 90% of America. As for the gun thing, I bet you wont believe me and say everyone is, but I don't fear death. I was happy with my life. I'm christian, yes, so I do believe once I leave here I'll be in a better place.
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mapaghimagsik at 1:13AM, Jan. 2, 2007
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Lords_of_Darkness
I have to agree with subcultured in that I would DEFEND not help DESTROY. I haven't studied curent events …

Part of defending your country is getting up on world events. Its not easy, but it will make a lot of things clearer. It also is proven to keep people from using the caps lock when typing.

The idea this is yelling at one man has long since faded from those that pay attention. All you need to do is see a picture of Ford with Cheney and Rummy right next to understand that the current issues are institutional issues.

Anything else is a straw man made by people who don't stay up on issues.
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Vindibudd at 8:35AM, Jan. 3, 2007
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It depends on why the country is going to war. My priorities: God, Country, Family, Florida Gators.
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Roguehill at 8:17AM, Jan. 4, 2007
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It's been interesting reading the responses here. Of course, it can be seen as a very large question. For me, it comes down to the following question: Are you a citizen or a consumer?

A consumer is more than happy to recieve the benefits from living in a society with a wealth of privilages, but doesn't really participate in the system of government (voting) and will happily run from the country if the majority decides in a way that impacts their freedoms.

A citizen enjoys the benefits of living in a privilaged society and chooses to participate in shaping their government (voting or running for office). If, however, the majority does not agree with their views, they will continue to participate, even to the extent that participation to support the majority threatens their lives.

Societies aren't groups of individuals acting without consensus. If the government creates a law that you don't agree with, you can attempt to change the law or the government, but you should still obey the law as much as possible.

I joined the Naval Reserve at the age of 36 because I believe that service to the people of the country is an important thing to me. I've had many friends mobilized and sent off to Iraq and Afganistan, and their opinions about our jobs there vary, but they almost always view it as a simple service that they are privilaged to perform. I asked a friend who VOLUNTEERED to go to Iraq why he did it, and he told me “Look, I'm single with no strong family ties. I figure that if I go, it will keep one more guy with a family at home.”

I'm an artist, not a gun-toting maniac. I know that going into a war would be the most awful experience I could ever imagine, but at least I'm trying to do my part to support my country…even though it may be doing something that is, in the end, a failure.

In my eyes, it's part of being a citizen.

-Roguehill

GHOST ZERO
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Phantom Penguin at 8:32AM, Jan. 4, 2007
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PhatScurl
I don't care what country your from, im just curious. In the event you were drafted or were needed for your military, would you willingly pick up a gun and run full charge at your opposers. Are you ready to kill and be killed for the country you live in? Don't answer unless your completely sure.

I from America, and i feel that i am one of the few people who knows, how good i have it. I am in my schools JROTC program, and enjoy it a lot. I love my country with all my heart, and i will do almost anything to protect it. I intend on dying a proud american whether it be from a bullet or age

I already have:
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y130/avtomat1/Picture137.jpg
(old picture)

And it makes me feel great.
I've been to Iraq twice now and iam proud of what i have done for my country.
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mapaghimagsik at 3:34PM, Jan. 4, 2007
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That Bradley, Phantom?
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:51PM
Phantom Penguin at 7:26PM, Jan. 4, 2007
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That Bradley, Phantom?

Its a M1A2 SEP MBT.
with all the lazy computers and crap inside.
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mapaghimagsik at 10:28AM, Jan. 5, 2007
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Phantom Penguin
mapaghimagsik
That Bradley, Phantom?

Its a M1A2 SEP MBT.
with all the lazy computers and crap inside.

Well, at least you ride in style. Not comfortably, I hear, but style.

I hope you know the difference between supporting the troops and supporting the mission. I think its fine to be proud of the job you did, even if the commanders pretty much gave the wrong mission.

Takes a special kind of dedication to do the wrong job right. If our leaders were as dedicated at finding the right mission, that would be double plus golden.
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Roguehill at 10:43AM, Jan. 5, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Takes a special kind of dedication to do the wrong job right. If our leaders were as dedicated at finding the right mission, that would be double plus golden.

Not to say that you could be absolutely right about this, but….are you sure that you'd be making different choices? I mean, we love to sit on the sidelines and say “Sheesh! Did you see that loser? If I were running that 5k, I'd keep going until I won!”

Just to point out that folks who say "Well, if I were president, things would be different!" usually don't have much of a clue as to what being the leader (or at least figurehead) of a world superpower is about.

I sure know I don't…

GHOST ZERO
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:09PM
Phantom Penguin at 10:50AM, Jan. 5, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
Phantom Penguin
mapaghimagsik
That Bradley, Phantom?

Its a M1A2 SEP MBT.
with all the lazy computers and crap inside.

Well, at least you ride in style. Not comfortably, I hear, but style.

I hope you know the difference between supporting the troops and supporting the mission. I think its fine to be proud of the job you did, even if the commanders pretty much gave the wrong mission.

Takes a special kind of dedication to do the wrong job right. If our leaders were as dedicated at finding the right mission, that would be double plus golden.

You can't have a country be occupied if they don't want to be occupied. Simple as that. I understand that yes you can hate the war but support the soldiers. Thats how iam, I hate the war, why did 3,006 soldiers need to die? Many reasons, but none of them were right.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:42PM
mapaghimagsik at 10:58AM, Jan. 5, 2007
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What's truly beginning to bug me is the “how many soldiers killed” argument is a bit of a false argument because its also used as “look, only 3006 soldiers killed”.

It was my understanding that that ‘casualties’ means ‘the total number made unavailable for duty from all causes’, and that number is around 50,000. From a resource standpoint, some of these people will need treatment for life, which is a tragedy, since I'm too well aware of Vietnam veterans that didn't get the support they needed.

And even if you can somehow be so cold as to say “well they voluteered for the military, and need to be used” You can get to the Iraqi casualties – the very people we were supposedly freeing.

Its just too many good people dying for the wrong causes.

But I digress. Cheers and Happy Friday.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:51PM
mlai at 12:33PM, Jan. 5, 2007
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Mark me as a consumer, then, not a citizen. I'm too cynical and well-educated to be a citizen.

Nationalism and patriotism are abstract concepts manipulated for the sake of those in power, just like religion. Instead of some guy toting God, it's some guy who doesn't give 2 ****s about you waving the flag and telling you “this is what The Flag wants you to do.”

Look at Dynastic China. Every few centuries, one dynasty dies and another takes its place, often violently. Bunches of ppl, immersed in the idea of patriotism, fight as rebels against the new dynasty long after the old rotten one is gone. In the end, what was the point? China was, and is, still China. You, OTOH, only have this one life to live, now and forever.

Belonging to a nation is a social contract, not an obligation or some sacred duty. I pay my taxes, I pay my fines, I buy stuff, sell services, I function as a member of daily society and the economy. In return, I receive social services such as protection from fire and crime, and social infrastructure maintenance such as paved roads. That's the extent of my social contract. Unless forced to do so, my life is NEVER up for sale.

FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
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ozoneocean at 12:50PM, Jan. 5, 2007
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Roguehill
It's been interesting reading the responses here. Of course, it can be seen as a very large question. For me, it comes down to the following question: Are you a citizen or a consumer?
Heh, that's a bit Heinline of you isn't it? Either him or ancient Athens, Sparta, or Rome. They do say that the US is very much molded on Rome and I'm continually surprised at how many people serve or have served in the military in that country… It seems like a massive percentage. -Anecdotally at least.

I don't hold with Heinline type ideas on citizenship. I think Mlai has the right idea here: Beware the traps of nationalism, patriotism, Chauvinism and jingoism. ;)

Although I always did want to be the captain of a warship when I was little… Basically because I love ships and I liked the uniforms, especially the hats. It'd probably still be a decent job.
 
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mapaghimagsik at 12:56PM, Jan. 5, 2007
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ozoneocean
Roguehill
It's been interesting reading the responses here. Of course, it can be seen as a very large question. For me, it comes down to the following question: Are you a citizen or a consumer?
Heh, that's a bit Heinline of you isn't it? Either him or ancient Athens, Sparta, or Rome. They do say that the US is very much molded on Rome and I'm continually surprised at how many people serve or have served in the military in that country… It seems like a massive percentage. -Anecdotally at least.

I don't hold with Heinline type ideas on citizenship. I think Mlai has the right idea here: Beware the traps of nationalism, patriotism, Chauvinism and jingoism. ;)

Although I always did want to be the captain of a warship when I was little… Basically because I love ships and I liked the uniforms, especially the hats. It'd probably still be a decent job.

Yeah, it is very Heinlein, especially if you don't really count the other forms of service. I don't buy into it either. What I do buy into is the idea that you don't get something for nothing, and people who want goods and services from society without contributing somehow, be that goods or services in return are a bit deluded.

The US doesn't madate military service and the actual % is far lower than say during WWII or Korea even. But that was because we had conscription which made military service mandatory.

I'm not a fan of mandatory military service. I think there are better ways to provide good for society. At the same time, I know that military service has been very good for some of my friends.
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Roguehill at 1:19PM, Jan. 5, 2007
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mapaghimagsik
What I do buy into is the idea that you don't get something for nothing, and people who want goods and services from society without contributing somehow, be that goods or services in return are a bit deluded.


Aha! That's what I mean. I could have said it in a single paragraph?

*sigh*

Thanks Mapaghimagsik (say that 3 times fast! Or….even once…)

-Roguehill

GHOST ZERO
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marine at 7:40PM, Jan. 9, 2007
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I'd not only defend my country, I would attack other countries pre-emptively for it. Its just that they won't let me.
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Krensada at 5:47AM, Jan. 15, 2007
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I tried to get into the military 5 times. Each time was for the same reason. Im not going to let my country fall if i have anything i can do about it. whether the threat to my country is foregn or domestic i would Kill my enemies with extreme prejudice. Most people I talk to dont have the balls to fight for what they believe in. They label themselfs as pasafists but I see them as selfish, pussies. I acually feel really, really, bad that Im not able to get into the military like Multiple generations of my family have. I look up to my grandpas and to my dad, who were in the military and were alive to tell me thier exploits. Every time they told me the stories of The things they did, they even made cleaning the head sound glorios. I say we kill our enemys untill there is none left. War is not fair. War is war. I commend every last one of our soldiers for risking thier lives for me. there is so many of those pussies that dont deserve what they do for us. god bless them all!
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ozoneocean at 8:21AM, Jan. 15, 2007
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Oh gawd… You'd make a good soldier. I wouldn't mind being your commanding officer! ^_^
Why couldn't you get in any of those times?

Ha! Generations of everyone's families have gone to war, not because they really wanted to; they didn't actually have much choice, depending on their situation. :)

Being a pacifist takes a helluva lot of balls, more than that of an entire army! Could you hold yourself back from fighting if your country or family was in danger? Could you? I know I couldn't, I'm not brave enough, I'd have to fight. You have to be a pretty bloody strong person to resist fighting back because of your principals. I'm in awe of such people, I only wish I was half of what they are.

Saying a pacifist is weak is the same twisted logic that calls a suicide bomber a coward: bombers are selfish and crazy and bad, but it takes far more guts to willingly sacrifice your life for your beliefs than it does to bomb people's houses from a mile up in the sky. …And of course those guts are on display for all to see afterwards…
 
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ccs1989 at 12:23PM, Jan. 15, 2007
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I say we kill our enemys untill there is none left. War is not fair. War is war. I commend every last one of our soldiers for risking thier lives for me. there is so many of those pussies that dont deserve what they do for us. god bless them all!

But you know, killing every enemy until there are none left would make the other side do the same thing. Then we'd have nuclear war and the entire human race would be killed off.

Anyway I respect people like Martin Luther King, Ghandi, and Thoreau, so my views are completely the opposite of yours.

Also have you considered the fact that what we're doing in Iraq will just make us more enemies down the road? And then we'll have to fight them and make new enemies? Violence is a vicious cycle. The only true way to combat senseless violence is through education that this black and white way of looking at the world doesn't work. More and more people are realizing that in response to the war in Iraq, which is why even Republican senators are coming out against the President.
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Ronson at 1:48PM, Jan. 15, 2007
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Krensada
I tried to get into the military 5 times. Each time was for the same reason. Im not going to let my country fall if i have anything i can do about it. whether the threat to my country is foregn or domestic i would Kill my enemies with extreme prejudice.

First, I'm going to assume that “your” enemies are the same as enemies of the United States.

Secondly, I want to know how you decide who “your” enemies are. Will you blindly accept that whomever the President of the United States says is an enemy is an enemy?

Thirdly, you claim to want to kill anyone who threatens us, even domestically. What do you constitute as a threat? Are you talking about home grown terrorists, or would you actually consider someone who breaks constitutional law to be “your” enemy?

Most people I talk to dont have the balls to fight for what they believe in. They label themselfs as pasafists but I see them as selfish, pussies.

Maybe they are not certain that their beliefs are the only valid ones. Certainly not everyone who thinks differently is your enemy … are they?

I acually feel really, really, bad that Im not able to get into the military like Multiple generations of my family have. I look up to my grandpas and to my dad, who were in the military and were alive to tell me thier exploits. Every time they told me the stories of The things they did, they even made cleaning the head sound glorios. I say we kill our enemys untill there is none left. War is not fair. War is war. I commend every last one of our soldiers for risking thier lives for me. there is so many of those pussies that dont deserve what they do for us. god bless them all!

Life is far simpler when it is reduced to the black and white video-game style shoot them all. What precautions would you take to be sure that those you're shooting at are indeed your enemies?
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Krensada at 4:41PM, Jan. 15, 2007
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Ronson
Life is far simpler when it is reduced to the black and white video-game style shoot them all. What precautions would you take to be sure that those you're shooting at are indeed your enemies?

There is no way ronson. I didn't say there was any good that came from war. Our soldiers
are only human and make mistakes. and so is our president. and I do not look at war as the solution to all problems. but its the only solution we can comprehend. But due to medical conditions i was born with I cannot back up the fact that id serve my country. But if i were enlisted, i would try to be a good soldier. If i didn't do my duty right and made the mistake of killing the innocent, then yes i would turn myself in and face the punishment for it. I would be willing to do that. all the precautions we can take can't save us from making a mistake or two though.

and to answer the most simple question you gave me: No I don't think everybody who thinks different than me is my enemy. but a soldiers job is to defend his country at all costs. ANd i say now that if my commanding officer was to give me an order to shoot at sombody, and if i didn't or couldn't do it…I would be insubordinate to my country and i just can't see myself doing that. I do have common sense though to not go randomly shooting at everybody i see.

This is a hard discussion. but thanks for your thoughts Ronson.
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ccs1989 at 4:45PM, Jan. 15, 2007
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Alright, you seem to have cut down on the jingoism a bit, and it's true that an officer has to be loyal to their commanding officer. But as humans we would hope that we can avoid war with a greater amount of education, and overcome these instincts to destroy people who think differently from us.

In the end, rationality should prevail.
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Krensada at 5:04PM, Jan. 15, 2007
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ccs1989
Alright, you seem to have cut down on the jingoism a bit, and it's true that an officer has to be loyal to their commanding officer. But as humans we would hope that we can avoid war with a greater amount of education, and overcome these instincts to destroy people who think differently from us.

In the end, rationality should prevail.


Like i said above this is a hard discussion for me. I have very strange feeling about this kind of thing. But thats why I love the symbolism of my country and what it's trying to stand for. Alot of other countries are trying to stand for the very same thing. perhaps one of the problems we have is that none of us know how exactly to pursue such a dream. but indeed we must pursue it. for the sake of our children. the pursuit of this dream has led us down some rather,rocky paths. and i don't think anyone has yet thought of a rational way to get there yet. but i bet even you can agree that we shouldn't just lay down and die. Life is too wonderful to just give it up after all. I have to tell you that being a soldier would be something I wouldn't enjoy having to be but I will be one nonetheless and without question. I would do it to defend everybody I cared about. and even those who I haven't even met. cause i know they want to live. so i would try to save their lives. I don't know what else to say.
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Tundra at 7:03PM, Jan. 15, 2007
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No, I would not.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 4:35PM
Aurora Moon at 10:21AM, Jan. 16, 2007
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posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
My country is certainly important to me… most especially everything that stands for it. However…that doesn't mean that I would jump at the chance to “defend” my country in any war.

Because after all, not every “enemy” is there to kill off America, to kill off the bill of rights of our forefathers, to kill off our freedom unlike what the obviously biased media and the government would like you to believe.

After all, most of our “enemies” is actually on another contient. They're usually in third world poor countries with no way of actually killing our families (unless our family memebers actually went over in the war to go fight those “enemies”), and or destorying any of America personally. Most of the “enemy” actually have no bomber planes, no tanks or any of the techology to actually cross over to America to do any damage to us personally. They just have a lot of personal issues of their own to even care about America…. they only care when America chooses to butt into their issues and tries to make everything “better”.

And yes, you're proably gonna bring up omasa bin laden and how he had no techology of his own and stll managed to come to america to do some damage.. But that's my second point that I'm about to make. this whole war started off with us looking for that rat bastard. but now the focus competely changed, and now it's not even about him anymore. now our troops are off fighting “terrorism” in a whole different country competely while osama bin laden is off somewhere laughing at us and getting off scott free.
This war has changed it focus and goals way too often that I'm not even sure what the actual goal and cause of war is anymore.

So how can I be so certain that I'm doing the right thing, that I'm doing this for an noble cause when the war keeps on shifting and changing?

So my answer is No, I would not… as much as I love my country.
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:09AM

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