On this earth, death is permanent, although those who believe in the afterlife may disagree. Most of us have read, heard about, or witnessed incidences deemed by some to be a miracle of God. Please do not confuse an unexplained re-birth with permanent death. Physicians and other medical professionals have cautioned us by offering their opinions relative to situations that may cause an imminent death, i.e., those caused by catastrophic illnesses, various accidents, and even causalities of war. Although we were forewarned, the dead of this earth remained dead. To ignore and to approve of the taking of someone’s life hinges dangerously close to our displaying and possibly developing an attitude of insensitivity and glamorizing the numerous violent acts of “murder.” One may ask how so?
Lock arms and walk with me as we stroll through the landmines of our thoughts and our consciousness. We host parades and pin medals of honor on men and women for their “slaughter” of others as we label them heroes. We play Taps and issue twenty-one-gun salutes. We express our appreciation for their service. These words are empty because, in the same breath, our political representatives overwhelmingly defeat bills that would have a major impact on the health and well-being of those whom we say we appreciate, who have risked and lost their lives in the name of freedom and patriotism. The survivors wear their scars—visible and invisible—to their graves.
Men glamorizing death and call it “war” are known to embrace the demise of a people, execute criminals and alleged criminals and call it “justifiable,” hang other men and women from trees and gather to watch these actions as if they were attending a Broadway play. Murder individuals and call it “doing their duty,” appointing themselves as judge and executioners and we hardly bat an eye at the murders they commit. We worship the NRA as it continues to finance its political demagogues to push their financially rewarding agenda to produce the very weapons that desecrate and destroy families.
We slowly wash the blood from our hands and admonish our children to refrain from bullying, to be civil and to uphold what is morally right for the good of all, as we smugly; mistreat and infringe upon the rights of others, falsely labeling ourselves as being the epitome of a “civilized” people.
We pass laws that abdicate us when we willfully fail to perform our civic duties and responsibilities of providing a safe, healthy, wholesome haven for all of our citizens. We casually and shamelessly reference the act of murder as being a casualty, an unavoidable incident, an honest mistake, or an unfortunate mishap.
For us to make any attempt to quantify or to beautify the taking of a life is futile. Death is permanent and cannot be dressed up; you can’t tie a bow around it and beautify it. You cannot explain it away, you cannot wish it away, you cannot sing it away, you cannot spray perfume on it and eliminate the stench that remains in the nostrils of those grieving. There is no magic wand we can wave.
Glamorizing the paradox of war and murder, no matter how you attempt to spin it, a life was lost: self-defense — a life was lost; dropping bombs on other human beings — lives were lost; I made a mistake — a life was lost.
There are no plausible explanations for taking the life of another. While we certainly feel justified in defending ourselves, have we honestly assessed and asked ourselves:
Who was the real aggressor?
To deceive ourselves is the biggest travesty of a civilized people. We see what others see, we hear what others hear. do we choose to lie to ourselves because we have allowed ourselves to separate the two words, war and murder, for personal conveniences?
Melvin “Casey” Lars ©
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