Wars Without Anguish

Today is the 13th anniversary of the attack on the Twin Towers in New York by radical Islamic terrorists.

Many words have been written today, memorializing the tragic deaths of innocents who died that day, and the soldiers who have died fighting since then.  I’d like to take a minute to ponder that day and see it through the eyes of my children.  My oldest daughter was 7, my middle daughter 4, and my son was only 2 when the airplanes collided into the buildings.

In the thirteen years since then, America has been at war.  My children have spent their entire lives growing up in the midst of the terrible carnage of a war-torn America, where we all have felt the impact and agony of loss and bereavement.

Oh wait…..

Let me clarify.  There have been many, many people who have lost loved ones due to the attacks thirteen years ago, and many people have lost beloved sons and daughters who are serving overseas to protect the fat, happy, and ignorant people who live in America.  I in no way want to minimize their grief, as it is real and raw.

In contrast, the majority of Americans probably never even give the war overseas a second thought.

September 20, 2001 President George W. Bush declared “War on Terror”, which eventually led to lengthy campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan.  As I look back at my life since then, I can honestly say not one single thing has changed.  I went to work like normal.  Earned a paycheck and got in debt.  Raised my kids the best I could and worked some more.

After 13 years at war, I wonder if my kids even know that we have soldiers dying for their freedom. Their life has not been impacted in the least.  Their uncle was in the Marine Reserves and had to move to San Diego for a year, but that is it.  My wife and I have talked to them about the conflict and what we are fighting for, surely.  I think it all is theory to them, just words and possibilities.

When I remember and read about World Wars I and II, it was obvious to every single American we were at war.  A draft was instated, factories were turned into war production assemblies, certain citizens were placed in interment camps and food was rationed.  Our country rallied around the troops and did everything possible to help them from the home front.

Have I or my family sacrificed anything for the cause?  Nope.  Even as I type this, I’m staying up late to buy my wife the new iPhone.  Like I said, I’m fat, lazy and happy.

Please don’t misunderstand my comments as complaints. I’m just thinking out loud.  Is it my fault for the apathetic attitude the country displays?  Did I add to it by my ignorance?  Am I completely wrong and am I the only ignorant fool?

My youngest child, my son, will be 16 this December.  That is two years from 18, the age of legal conscription if the government so chooses.  Honestly, that scares the hell out of me.  Will we still be at war?  According to President Obama, we might still be bombing Syria at that time!  I fear for my son, however slim the chances of being drafted are.

This topic is vast and complex with many moving parts. I am not advocating pro/anti war positions here.  Just wondering if my life should be more impacted as we are at war.

Is there a cure for American indifference?  What do you think?


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