Saturday, May 24, 2008

Instead of glorifying war, Memorial Day calls us to pursue alternatives to militarism

Reverently mourning the loss of even one soldier’s life and contemplating its cost in lost potential, relationships, creativity, and community contribution over a generation confronts us with a sobering, gut-wrenching challenge. War--and those whose lives are snuffed out or haunted by it--gives us every indication that we have not yet explored or employed our best intellectual, spiritual and material resources for preventing or addressing conflicts.

Instead of glorifying war and perpetuating the spirit of militarism, this holiday affords us an opportunity to contemplate how far we have to go as a nation--and as a human family--in transforming our means of defending liberty, advancing democracy, and procuring justice. Every Memorial Day is an opportunity to consider: given the cost in these precious lives, we must find a better way, not just repeat the past again and again.

Photo: I took this picture today at Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis

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