Sometimes my penchant for sarcasm must be suppressed. Sorry. I believe in transparency. Can someone please share with me why in the last 2-3 years, our nation continues to go to war? We keep engaging in brand new “military conflict.”
There is the war on drugs, war on labor, war on terror, and war on teachers. Not to mention the war on education, war on guns, war on Catholics, and war on Christmas. Lest we forget the war on poverty, war on Wall Street, war on faith, and war on freedom. Ladies and gentleman, we are a nation at war!
I have wondered for some time why the verbiage has regressed to such sensational standards. Interestingly, after the shooting of the congressional representative in Arizona 15 months ago, many called for the ceasing of rhetorical combat; however, many of those who called for the cessation have quickly learned to reload and refire. I therefore conclude that there exists something unique in the utilization of war terminology that stirs the emotions to a level that prompts action. In particular, it prompts votes. Sadly in this society — more than adhering to a nonporous standard of integrity — when words prompt votes, the appropriateness and exaggeration of the words seem irrelevant.
Our newest war? A war on women.
My sarcasm is again tempted, folks. A war on women? A war?
Last I knew a “war” was when 2 different nations or states picked up their arms, attempting to blow one another up, because they had different desires for what the end result should look like.
The roots in the latest round in this feminine “war” began months ago with talk of contraception. Should the government provide it for free? Should one taxpayer subsidize it for another? Women were divided.
The “war” advanced again this week when one powerful pundit, strategist Hillary Rosen, referred to Gov. Mitt Romney’s wife, Ann, as having “actually never worked a day in her life. She’s never really dealt with the kinds of economic issues that a majority of the women in this country are facing in terms of how do we feed our kids, how do we send them to school and why do we worry about their future.” Ann Romney, a survivor of both multiple sclerosis and breast cancer, was a stay-at-home mom, raising 5 boys.
Let it be known that Rosen later apologized for her “poorly chosen” words. Prior to that apology, however, she initially reaffirmed her claims via the world of Twitter. (My keen sense is that most likely, the pundit failed to initially recognize the unpopular military conflict she was just responsible for escalating.)
Thus, the Intramuralist is left with 2 questions:
- What are we doing? And…
- Why do we keep acting as if this is “war”?
What are we doing? We are dividing people.
As best I can discern, we are challenged as a nation to respect those who are different than us. Hence, most either accept all difference as equally good and healthy (when it might not be) — or we look down on others, thereby creating division. Rosen — albeit arguably unintentionally — was communicating in a way that gave the impression she looked down on Ann Romney. I don’t know Rosen nor Romney’s hearts, but we would be wiser if we wouldn’t minimize the perspective of another primarily because their circumstances are different than our own.
So why do we keep acting as if this is “war”? When Rosen apologized — no doubt also motivated to move past her personal role in the “war” escalation — she said, “Let’s declare peace in this phony war and go back to focus on the substance.” Amen. I agree. There is no war against stay-at-home moms in this country.
But there also is no war against poverty, against labor unions, against education, or Christmas. Remember that “war” means picking up our arms and attempting to blow up one another.
We could thus better “focus on the substance” if people would quit acting as if this was war.