“Don’t Cast Your Seed Upon the Ground”
Is the Right to Life proponents fight to ban abortion or destroying a cell in a Petrie Dish using this jingoism in reality? Are these the only lives they are concerned with? Contraception is also a hot topic among the Purists demoralizing Planned Parenthood.
Advocates generally maintain that the human fetus (and in most cases the human embryo) is a person and therefore has a right to life. I was trained in the military to kill, but embryos and fetuses weren’t mentioned. Those really concerned about the right to life would be more authentic if they kept the following history in mind and extend their passions to other human’s right to life.
I recall the joy of the American people when we received the news of the bombing of Hiroshima and then Nagasaki. Harry Truman after hearing about the bomb exclaimed, “This is the greatest thing in history.” David McCullough countered this by calling it one of the greatest barbarities in history. This bomb wasn’t dropped for military reason as there were 250,000 civilians killed and burned by radiation. We followed this atrocity with a second bomb as it used plutonian and this was a way to test it.
William D. Leahy, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of staff said: “The use of this barbarous weapon was of no material assistance in our war against Japan. The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender.” It must be noted that we not only killed real people but preformed many abortions of the many women slaughtered. These are only numbers but they had a right to life.
Sociologist Kai Ericson wrote: “The attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were not “combat” in any ways the word is normally used. Nor were they primarily attempts to destroy military targets, for the two cities had been chosen not despite but because they had a high density of civilian housing. Whether the intended audience was Russian or Japanese then both attacks were to be a show, a display, a demonstration. The question is: What kind of mood does a fundamentally decent people have to be in, what kind of moral arrangements must it make, before it is willing to annihilate as many as a quarter of a million human beings for the sake of making a point.”
Howard Zinn’s comment on Ericson’s statement is “Let’s leave aside the phrase “a fundamentally decent people,” which raises troubling questions: are Americans more deserving of that description than others? Are not all atrocities committed by “fundamentally decent people” who have been maneuvered into situations that derange the sense of morality common to all human beings?”
This is a subject probably not taught in detail in any of our school as the details are gruesome and the history taught in our school and covered in the media is Disney Land History; sugar coated to promote nationalism.
Historian James Loewen spent two years at the Smithsonian Institution surveying twelve leading high school textbooks of American history. He found an embarrassing blend of bland optimism, blind nationalism, and plain misinformation, weighing in at an average of 888 pages and almost five pounds.
In response, he wrote Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your High School History Textbook Got Wrong, in part a telling critique of existing textbooks, but also a gripping retelling of American history as it should, and could, be taught.
One concept I emphasized as a teacher was the value of reading books or reviews of the many excellent historians who have done extensive research in searching for the truth. Used copies of many of these biographies can be easily and cheaply purchased on line.
It would be wonderful if we remembered the lives of children and pregnant women endangered with our actions in Vietnam, Korea, Iraq, Kuwait, Afghanistan, WW 1&2 and others when we strive for the right to life without being maneuvered into these situations.
If we were to examine these wars with an open mind I wonder how much any of them had much influence on the protection of our freedom and liberty.
“Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”