Saturday, July 22, 2006

When the elephants rumble, the ants get crushed

When I was younger, I didn't care at all about politics. And when I say I didn't care, I mean I truly didn't care which way it went because it all seemed the same to me - the parties, the ideologies, and the people behind them all seemed like repackaged and reimagined versions of the same refried horseshit. Those in power were going to do as they were going to do, and from my youthful know-it-all vantage point, politics had pretty much no effect on my existence.

Fast forward to today. My outlook has changed quite a bit, but that's not what I want to talk about. In the last few days I've seen lots of articles pop up that offer explanations and opinions about the whys and whodunits behind this whole Israel vs. Lebanon war thing. And I've tried to read them, really I have. I've tried to gather together some facts and opinions in an attempt to develop some meager bit of understanding that goes beyond the standard "the Middle East is a swirling mass of violence and bloodshed and that's just how it is" that we typically fall back on.

Or I guess I should say that I've tried to try. Because as I'm skimming through this stuff, I realize that I'm only halfway reading it. I'm trudging through it like a high school reading assignment because once again, I just don't care. I don't care about the Israel Lebanon conflict. I don't care about the Iraq war. I don't care about the war on terrorism. Honestly, I just don't give a flying fuck about any goddamn war going on anywhere on this poor abused planet of ours.

Maybe I should clarify.

I do care that people are dying every day. Soldiers, civilians, innocents, guilties, whatever, they're human beings. I do care that children are being orphaned and that parents are losing their children and that friends are losing friends and families are being torn apart and towns, cities, entire countries are being decimated. But what I'm really tired of caring about, what I can no longer find the energy within myself to be concerned about is the reason for any of it. Who attacked who first and who responded in what way and what historical conflict goes back to the cavepeople and which corporations are run by which thinktanks and have the balls of which politicians in their pockets --- I simply don't care. Because the way I see it, behind all the reasons and all the justifications and all the lies, it all comes down to one basic fact: these wars are being waged by people who have placed humankind second to their own need to wreak havoc and accumulate power. That's it. The inalienable unquestionable right to freedom, to peace, hell, even to live that is shared by ALL human beings, these things mean nothing to the warmongers. They're breeding hatred where there should be compassion, and perpetuating the fallacy that the only appropriate response to violence is more violence. It's a lie that we should all be sick of choking on by now.

And don't hand me that "freedom isn't free" crap. These wars aren't about freedom, and I sure as hell don't need George Bush writing any checks on my behalf.

So I guess at the end of it, what I'm saying is that I do care, but I'm sick to my stomach of hearing the justifications because there's no justification for this shit. Humanity has to come to its senses before it destroys itself. And I don't think any power in the universe would stop us from doing so.

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