Tag Archives: morals

Holes: A mother’s love of son and country

“Doc, send my uniform to my mom. She’ll fix ‘em for me,” once said, was all the breathe that young soldier had left in him.

Major Daniels honored that soldier’s last request. He and a sergeant removed the uniform in silence. They set the pants and top across chair backs to let the blood dry out. It would take some time to let that much of a soak be ready for sending to the soldier’s mother.

No one wanted to believe in war. So untouched as the country was by it for so long. Sure, soldiers came home from war all the time. Plenty of conflicts and fighting, over there. But in the streets and towns of America, no, who would have thought so?

But it happened anyway. While plucking at the rose petals of freedom, the Federals had finally grasped a thorn. Once orders were given to use armed drones on citizens within the States all hell broke loose.

There were minor militias in the field across the country for both sides. Federal forces were of course the better armed and trained, in the beginning anyway. Militia backup for the federals were nothing but untrained, undisciplined thugs from the streets, looking to set their wrath upon anyone who got in the way. More in it for the pillaging ‘pay-back’ as they had been told all their lives they were due than any sense of preserving the union or patriotism. Blood was the currency.

In the Rebel ranks, all walks of life were there. Young, old. Rich, poor. Men and women. Everyone who knew what was at stake turned out in some way or another. Still, they were outnumbered. A war against them, generations in the planning had been let loose. From private to general though among the Rebel ranks, all knew it was a fight of winner-takes-all. Knowing what was at stake steeled spines as well as heated blood with courage enough to stand against those lopsided odds.

Her son’s funeral was a quiet affair. So many of her family were supports of the Federals, sending hateful letters to the mourning mother of how glad they were that her boy was dead: He was so stupid for fighting. Another brainwashed extremist as far as they were concerned, good riddance.

Those who weren’t there that loved the boy were already gone to fight or dead. As for the rest of the people who had known that young soldier, they didn’t have the time to worry about what was going on or to come to his funeral. No matter what happened those people didn’t care one way or the other, indifferent to anything other than what was on TV. As far as those kinds of people were concerned their lives were static. Nothing ever changed or would. Blissful indifference.

She stood there with her husband. He stood holding her, solid as a rock. Only his eyes told of the pain and anger ravaging within. Together the soldier’s parents stood over him, even after the grave was filled in and the workers left.

In the morning her husband left with a kiss. Rifle slung over his shoulder and a bag in hand. For a moment he stood looking back at his wife, his home of so many years. At the flag hung from his porch. Meeting his wife’s eyes- husband and wife-father and mother- both knew exactly what had to be done and were set about doing it.

Several days later a paper wrapped package came to her in the mail. Letters full of hate still came but had become a trickle. To each of those kinds of letters received she sent notes in response, notes of forgiveness. She did not return to those senders back their hate, but love instead. No easy task. She let her faith guide her pen strokes.

Feeling the softness beneath the paper wrapping she knew what was wrapped inside. Over the last year she had gotten several like it. Her son would send back uniforms and other things that needed to be mended. Some things were hard to come by anymore so an old fashioned approach was needed. Needle and thread. Frugality.

It was not her son’s handwriting on the paper she stared at from her chair at the dining room table. With great care she opened her last package of her son. She took up the uniform and sought the places to be mended.

Her heart was hard yet her fingers did their work. Threading the needle. Stitch by stitch. Her sons dried blood stained the fabric where she closed up holes. Bullet holes. Such small things.

She pricked a finger while at the last hole. One that would have been near to her son’s heart. She pressed the fingertip into the shirts stain, mixing hers and his together.

Laying out the clothes across her bed she went in to take a shower. There with the water in her face she cried aloud. Letter the spray wash away her tears as fast as they came. All that was held back against her heart she let free.

In the morning she stepped down her porch and walked to her car. She turned to look back, standing for a moment. She looked at the home she had lived for so many years. At the flag hanging from her porch. To the window upstairs that had been her son’s bedroom. A rifle slung over her shoulder and a uniform stained crimson in places scarred by careful stitches. She knew what needed to be done, and set about doing it.

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Tom is an erratic contributor to CDN. Former U.S. Army Signal Corps soldier, outspoken future Re-Education Camp intern #7-2521, world traveler, combat veteran and Author of the new books Lone WolfSucker Punched, dystopian near future America novels, and One Tough Truck (a War Story) available at Amazon.com.

 

 

Slavery

Historically slavery has always been around long before America was discovered. Europe held out to be one of the greatest places for owning slaves and the concept was not shortly lived. For black people to continually play the race card and hold American’s hostage indefinitely, for ideals that have literally nothing to do with modern America is ludicrous. In addition, for anyone to presume they are the product of some master plan, which promotes the oppression of the black man on the basis of color is equally insane, we all have options.

Throughout history man has been witness some deplorable events which have left a mark from one generation to another. Although the idea of slavery in itself is despicable, the reality is that it was very much a part of life and history and not limited to just the black man and his family. This is not meant to be a history lesson, rather it is an attempt to help people realize that the constant use of the race card, as a means of discrimination, is really getting old. For decades now we have become so complacent to the feelings of others that we use the word tolerance over and over again, and in the process we have become more intolerant of Christians, Jews, conservatives, and anyone whose ethical and moral beliefs are not in sink with the norms of the twenty-first century. History brings with it the events of the times, right or wrong, they are what they are, and cannot be changed. But for some groups to claim they are being held captive by the oppressors of yesterday is truly biased and unfair to modern civilization, most of which would agree that they hold a certain level of contempt for the very idea of slavery. Those people who love to stir-up trouble and sensationlize every story, truly need to find a way to move on and find something better to do, something more productive. The very government some of these people support, is the same government responsible for their poverty to begin with. Entitlements make people dependant; they lose hope and desire to change what for them is truly changeable. Slavery by definition is submission to a dominating influence. (Merriam – Webster) The influence in this case is more likely big government — each man becomes a slave to his own beliefs whether real or imaginary, and to believe that big governemnt is not a form of slavery is to be delusional.

Plato was taught by Socrates, Aristotle by Plato. Together they comprise the most influential figures in Western Philosophy. The philosophy of Aristotle (384–322 B.C.E.) is what influenced St. Thomas Aquinas. He was also the teacher for Alexander the Great. In one of his more famous writings, The Politics, Aristotle asserts: “But is there any one thus intended by nature to be a slave, and for whom such a condition is expedient and right, or rather is not all slavery a violation of nature? There is no difficulty in answering this question, on grounds both of reason and of fact. For that some should rule and others be ruled is a thing not only necessary, but expedient; from the hour of their birth, some are marked out for subjection, others for rule.” (1) Aristotle believed that some people were naturally slaves and some were not, those who were not Greek were considered barbarians and therefore more likely, by nature to be slaves. The color of a man’s skin had no bearing on the issue of slavery back then. Aristotle went on to discuss the nature of things which played an important role later on in history. Although the idea or justification of slavery in itself is never justified the importance behind the theories of Aristotle cannot be ignored or replaced.

Another example of slavery existed in Europe who had more African slaves then any other country in the world. England, France and Portugal used slave labor in their colonies while others, such as the Netherlands, Norway and Denmark, were mainly active in the commercial trade and shipping, thus contributing to the trade by carrying slaves from Africa to the Caribbean and Latin America. France was a major player in the slave trade and many of its cities on the West Coast(such as Nantes, Lorient, La Rochelle, and Bordeaux) have built their wealth through the triangular trade. Slaves on French vessels were mainly taken to the French Caribbean colonies such as Saint-Domingue and Martinique. In addition, France is also notorious for introducing the Code Noir (‘black code), a decree written in 1685 providing formal regulations for the treatment of slaves, governing their lives, deaths, freedoms, religion and how they were to be bought and sold. This gruesome document served to de-humanize the enslaved Africans even more by institutionalizing the trade in humans even further. France eventually outlawed the slave trade in 1830 and slavery itself in 1848. (2)

Since slavery was not limited to African’s, I must say that I do not hold anyone responsible, nor do I play the race card, in the event that at one time or another perhaps my ancestor’s might have been held captive as slaves. Likewise, I am not responsible for slavery or events that occured in the past. We need to consider the reality that we all have the free will to determine our own fate. We have the means and the ability to work to achieve our individual goals, follow our dreams, and determine the path we choose to walk. To hold on to the ideals that somehow every white man, women, and child born in the United States is somehow responsible for the oppression of Black people is ridiculous. The race card is so over played and reverse racism has become the norm for some people. In addition, whoever came up with the idea of adding the word American on to an ethnic group e.g. African-American – is equally stupid. Seriously, this idea was derived by someone with to much time on their hands. Clearly, whether you are black, white, pink, or purple, and if you were born in the United States, it is presumed you are an American, there is not need to put the American after your ethnic group.

The lesson to be learned here is that History is important. Without the truth and clear understanding about who we are as a people we can become misguided and lose faith in what is important. The truth of the matter is we are all children of God, whether we believe in him or not, it doesn’t matter, and we are all made in his image. What we need to do is treat everyone the way we would want to be treated, even the annoying person who we try to avoid; maybe that person even more. Hope is what allows us to persevere even in the worst of times — never lose site of that. Naturally, it is essential to realize that if we ignore history we are destined to repeat it.

References:

1 Aristotle’s theory of slavery is found in Book I, Chapters lll through Vll of the Politics and in Book VII of the Nicomachean Ethics.

2 http://www.realhistories.org.uk/uploads/File/Europe_Slavery.pdf