Monday, November 27, 2006

Loyalty - The Dead Hero

There are monuments to loyalty everywhere. Small stones, cenotaphs, neatly carved, neatly placed, and all in commemoration of a person or persons lost to loyalty. We are told that the names are of those who gave their lives for freedom.

There is not one person whose name is on a stone who 'wanted' to give up their freedom for others, and it would be churlish of us to honestly believe that. We exalt these persons in the hope that it will free us from guilt, the guilt of having been responsible for sending them to their untimely deaths.

For sure, they are freed from the pain and suffering of the battlefield, but they are also freed of the desire to be back home in the arms of loved ones, the safety of their own home, watching their children grow, and somehow I don't think that they wanted to give those three conditions up so easily. The pain and suffering doesn't end either. It is merely tranferred to those who are left.

We make the decision to go to war with whatever foe, and if we can make that decision, then we can stop it.

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