I just received a forwarded email with historic, very graphic photos of World War II. Contemplating the carnage, suffering and deaths of wars is emotional. Vietnam, Korea, China Japan wars, our Civil War, Indian Wars of the American West, and many more… We should all take a moment to think just what it was to die, mostly needlessly, on those battlefields.

The only way to rally the troops for those wars was to start with loud, lasting, negative rhetoric about how bad the perceived evil of those we intended to battle. In some cases the evil we fought was real and we fought to prevent genocide, More often, maybe it was just easier to battle rather than find common understanding and peace.

Fast forward to today: Is our rhetoric and talk about opposing political views, about other countries’ “intentions,” about perceived threats, etc., taking us toward deeper conflicts, maybe even another actual war? Or are we becoming more reasonable, more tolerant, and more cooperative and skilled in finding ways all people can live together?

There is a pretty obvious answer to those questions, I think.

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We will always need to be militarily strong to combat evil terrorists who have no desire to tolerate others; however, at the same time, shouldn’t we be the very best peacemakers the world has ever seen?

Sending off our sons and daughters off to kill the sons and daughters of others because we as leaders don’t know how to build peace is so ridiculous.

Tony Seitz


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