By Steve Almond | September 18, 2008 | Boston Globe
PERHAPS the most insidious byproduct of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has been a reflexive sanctification of the military. To put this in bumper stickerese: Support the Troops.
Well, I have an ugly confession to make: I don’t support the troops - at least not unconditionally. When somebody tells me they serve in the military, my first impulse isn’t to say, “Thank you for your service!” like those insufferable chickenhawks on talk radio.
My first impulse is to say, “I’m sorry to hear that.” Because I am. I’m sorry to know that the person I’m talking to might someday be maimed or killed on the job, or might someday kill someone else. Or refuel a plane that drops bombs on buildings.
I can’t see how anyone who calls himself or herself Christian - or human, for that matter - wouldn’t be sorry.
The fact that we have an army, that we need an army, is inherently tragic. It’s an admission that our species is still ruled by fear and aggression.
read the whole sorry thing