Thursday, November 13, 2003

It has been a long day and it won't end at work until around 10:30PM. It hasn't been abusive and I've gotten lots done, but a day this long is not a pretty thing. If this entry is disjointed or just too stream-of-consciousness, please be kind.

We are now retaliating against Iraqis in Baghdad, resuming our attacks on neighborhood sites or anywhere else we suspect those Iraquis might lurk who refuse to greet us as beloved heros for invading their country and destroying the economy and infastructure.
No, it doesn't feel any better that the last group of soldiers to be slaughtered were Italian instead of American. We seem to be sliding back into chaos and what have we achieved?

Rumors abound. I have heard talk of reviving the draft. If that happens, I think this time around women have to be included. Supposedly this society has made huge strides in achieving gender equality but that seems to stop at the battle lines. That women cannot be sent into battle is one of the last hold overs from the old Chivalric Code, along with the old saying "Women and children first" in the event of a shipwreck or other situation in which people have to be rescued. Feminists have denounced most practices of the Code as condescending, disenfranchising and paternalistic and I see no reason why the whole thing shouldn't be scrapped NOW. The message of it seems to be that women and the young must be protected as special, helpless, precious beings but that it is just fine to slaughter men.

I will certainly buy the idea of protecting children, something that actually isn't being done in this country as universally as it should. But the modern woman is hardly helpless, unskilled, weak or unintelligent. Certainly a great part of my militancy on this point grows out of my identity as a man who loves men. And I do love men: appreciatively, dearly, affectionately, romantically, sometimes passionately, and always with honor and respect as valuable human beings. As valuable as any woman or child. Not cannon fodder, not a nameless resource to be exploited. We are supposedly an advanced, enlightened society. Why does the slaughter continue? And why is it always the men?

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