Monday, December 17, 2012

Confronting the War at Home

State police arriving at school shooting in Newtown, CT
(photo/The Hour)
As US military forces roam the world in search of enemies to fight, folks back home are under assault by suicidal, mayhem-bent sons and neighbors wielding military assault weapons. America’s relentless war on terrorism—i.e., on people using mass violence against the globally expansive American way of life—has come home in terrifying, terrible ways.

Gunmen from our own communities have turned urban neighborhoods, suburban shopping malls, college campuses and small town schools into war zones.

“We can’t tolerate this anymore. These tragedies must end,” President Obama said Sunday at a prayer vigil in Newtown, Connecticut, where a 20-year-old local resident killed 20 school children, six teachers and administrators, his mother and himself in volleys of shots in a war on the community where he was raised.

The military solution would be to declare martial law, station troops at every school, shopping center and every other public gathering place, marshal special operations teams to break down doors at every home and apartment that military-intelligence found reason to believe may harbor hidden weapons of mass destruction.

That’s been the American way of war for the past decade and more in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s been very popular in American video games, movies, TV shows. And it’s been a fatal attraction for many young men in American communities whose minds became unhinged in a society that apparently worships military-style violence.

“We have to change,” our commander-in-chief said in Newton. Obama could lead off by ending the war on terrorism in Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world. Americans are dying across America of the consequences of waging such violence abroad.

The rest of us will have to decide if we have the courage of the teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown who died confronting a hometown gunman wielding a military-style arsenal made in America.

No comments: