Warriors of peace
Men are likely to be not only the warriors of war but also the warriors of peace. Almost all those who risk their lives, are put in jail, or are killed for peace are men. While some of the peace warriors – Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Gandhi, Dag Hammarskjold – are remembered, most are forgotten. Remember Norm Morrison?
After years of protesting the Vietnam War, Norm doused himself with gasoline and set himself on fire on the steps of the Pentagon. The incident fueled the opposition to the war and focused energy on what protesters felt was the enemy within, the Pentagon 89 But Norm Morrison is forgotten. As is Brian Wilson, who repeatedly lay on railroad tracks to stop navy trains from supplying munitions to bomb the people in Central America. One train went right over him.
It’s a legitimate debate whether Norm Morrisons preserve peace or undermine the military strength needed to preserve peace; whether the military preserves peace or creates a military mentality with a propensity to create war, whether Japan’s recent methods of economic and family strength or Switzerland’s historic method of staying neutral makes a nation happier than either war warriors or peace warriors. But we tend to accuse men of being warriors of war and forget that men are also warriors of peace. No one gives the Brian Wilsons or the Norm Morrisons Purple Hearts for peace.