The Luxury of Pacifism has been Paved by the Duty of Warriors

April 20, 2010 – 12:13 pm

My father served in the Korean War. When he returned our family deteriorated because he wasn’t given the opportunity to re-acclimate, and was held in contempt by others who didn’t serve.

Our family melted down and as a result I never got to know my father after the divorce and even imported my mother’s side of the story. Only after his death a few years ago did I learn the full story, and I lamented a lifetime lost with my father.

When I discovered myself in Israel in the baptismal waters of the River Jordan and realized it was the precise spot my father had pilgrimaged to heal his soul, I wept. I had rejoined his spirit at last.

An incident on an airplane during the Icelandic volcano eruption swelled this within me again.

Young soldiers boarded our flight forward of us. 20-ish “pacifists” scoffed profanities like “warmongering pigs.” The soldiers remained quietly stoic during the tirade, unwilling to lower themselves to the debasement of these unruly kids.

One boy went to throw chewing gum at them and I caught his wrist “gently”. I advised him that he could only choose pacifism because others have chosen to be warriors and that his ignorance is a luxury paid for by the blood of service men and women. The other passengers clapped, as they all had been seething at the tyranny of these raucous adolescents.

Don’t hate those vigilantly standing post on the wall over your liberty.

 Don’t hate those who voluntarily raise their hands to move toward violence for your safety.

 Honor them for doing what you do not so you do not need to.

 Embrace them when they come home for only our love heals spirits damaged from what they’ve endured… for us.

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Scott Sonnon

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  1. 12 Responses to “The Luxury of Pacifism has been Paved by the Duty of Warriors”

  2. Eaxactly right, Scott. In this golden age of “Rights and Freedoms”, many people of all ages forget how different it is to most of history.

    If it wasn’t for the Military and Law Enforcement personnel holding the gate against the Horde, life would be very different for those who hold them in contempt.

    I think a majority of people realise this, but the “vocal minority” seem to have a big voice.

    Churchill’s quote still peels out with the truth - “We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.”

    The only change I would make is that in today’s world there are many girls as well as guys on the front line. I’ve worked with quite a number of women who I had no doubts about when all went pear-shaped. They’re as tough or tougher (and meaner… :-) than blokes.

    By Wayne O'Brien on Apr 20, 2010

  3. I’ve been considering a career in the British Royal Marines for a long-time; as it is a job I have always respected and wished to aspire to. Although because of the queries of unjust wars and negative opinions of others, it’s made me think twice and wonder if it’s the right thing to do. However, I’ve recently made the plunge and put in my application, so it was reassuring to read this blog, thank you for posting.

    By Richie on Apr 21, 2010

  4. The most misused citations the “pacifists” uses here is from Bertold Brecht: “Imagine there’s war and no one goes to”. What they don’t tell is that the citation continues: “… then the war will come to you!”

    By andreas on Apr 21, 2010

  5. It is very important to distinguish between the brave men and women who volunteer to fight, and disagreeing with where those sitting safely send them to fight.

    By Jeremy Kriegel on Apr 21, 2010

  6. Awesome Sir.

    Post like these stir the blood and keep me coming back for more.

    Thank you for leading the way.

    Vicente
    US Virgin Islands

    By Vicente on Apr 21, 2010

  7. A pacifist passes-the-fist.

    By Mark on Apr 21, 2010

  8. As a 18 year USAF serviceman, currently guard. I have seen this before and been on the receiving end of scorn before. It truly infuriates me. I have stood at the grave site of friends who did not make it back. But when we wear the uniform, we are a symbol of the nation.

    I am proud to see my fellow serviceman showed their true military bearing and stoic resolve in the face of such taunting. May God watch over us all.
    Wes E. Tower, Penn. Air National Guard.

    By Wes Tower on Apr 22, 2010

  9. Good post, thank you for sharing.

    By Kevin on Apr 22, 2010

  10. Extremely stirring to the emotions. Wish there were more out there who opened up & made their thoughts & beliefs known, myself included. Believe it would bring about a major needed change in our society, our Republic, even the world.

    By Paul Arnold on Apr 26, 2010

  11. I’m sorry for the loss of those years that you and your father experienced, Scott, but am thankful you learned the rest of the story and that he apparently finally came to some healing.

    I have seen that Bertold Brecht “partial” quote before, and always thought the exact same thing that the rest of the quote states, so thanks Andreas, for bringing it to light. Our soldiers deserve all the thanks we can give them for defending against those who WOULD bring the war to us.

    By Margie on May 16, 2010

  12. Beautiful story Scott. If only so many others could understand the reality. Many have become truly lost in ignorance, and I hope we find our way. You are a true patriot of Freedom. God Bless You.

    By Michele Castellano on May 27, 2010

  13. Currently serving in the Navy. Been in for one year. It kind of hurts me that people in my age group have taken those of us who are the same age who are serving for granted. I loved the story, Scott. Never been face to face with an enemy, but I never downplayed the possibility that it could happen….which is why I would never pretend to have been one of those spec ops members who have been shot at…

    By Leia on Jul 11, 2011

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