…..Is it still okay to talk about peace or has it become unpatriotic to do so? Is refusal to follow our leaders blindly into whatever war they initiate showing disrespect to our fighting men and women? These are questions that I ask quite honestly and without any sarcasm intended. I ask these questions because I often feel that when I mention the word peace that I am somehow doing something controversial, that many feel I should probably keep silent and say nothing. Sure, it may be easy for you who are on the side of the majority, who are on the same side as the media. It is easier to speak your mind when you are on the side that has the support of all of the powerful institutions, all of the big money. Whether we care to admit it or not, there are trillions of dollars to be made by selling arms and virtually nothing to be gained by supporting peace.
…..So let me ask one more time, is it okay if I share my thoughts about peace, about peace being something that should be supported and worked towards by all of humanity?
…..I’ll admit, I’ve never been the biggest patriot. I’ve never wrapped myself up in a flag, was never one to unquestioningly obey orders. You see, when I was growing up, I was told that what was so special about my country was that it allowed you the opportunity to do things the way you wanted to do them. You were allowed to think what you wanted to think, do what you wanted to do. And I believed that, I really did. Not only did I believe that my country gave to me a freedom that no other country on earth gave, I also accepted the idea that freedom was a very special right. Not only a right, but a responsibility. I had a responsibility to act freely, to oppose any kind of oppression, whether it be overt oppression or the more hidden oppression that comes from public opinion. I considered it to be a sacred duty to think for myself and resist any temptation to conform, to think the way I was supposed to think.
…..Mind you, I didn’t just say whatever came into my mind. I never said or did things merely because I could. I’ve always been rather conservative when it came to speaking my mind. Because freedom was a sacred thing, I did not wish to abuse it. But I nurtured that idea of freedom, tried to cultivate inside myself the idea that whatever thoughts I grew inside of my own mind had a certain value precisely because they were not dictated to me by some outside force. I had a notion, given to me not only by the founding fathers of my country, not only by my religion, but also by everything I had read of the great thinkers of history. I had a notion that if we are given enough freedom, as well as a proper environment in which to grow, that we would in this fashion make the best possible world.
…..Is it a crime against our nation, our government, our fighting men and women, against freedom itself? Is it okay to talk about peace?