Muslims and Christians: An Email Exchange
January 24, 2015
On Thu, Jan 22, 2015 at 4:28 PM, Peter Schultz wrote:
"Considering a long, bloody history of Manifest Destiny noted for the slaughter of “savages” and the lawless, violent spirit of places like Deadwood, South Dakota, during the gold rush, D.H Lawrence characterized “the essential white America” this way: “The essential American soul is hard, isolate, stoic, and a killer.” In 1973, Richard Slotkin wrote a now-famous book on the mythology of the American frontier called Regeneration Through Violence."
On Jan 23, 2015, at 9:17 AM, Paul wrote:
Not sure why anyone would limit the quotation to "white America," seems to apply to every corner of the world to me. –P
On Fri, Jan 23, 2015 at 2:26 PM, Peter Schultz wrote:
I am imaging, as this was written in a review of "American Sniper," which seems to be playing great popularity, and given that the US has been labeled, “the United States of Amnesia,” that the quote seemed especially applicable here. But, of course, I could be wrong.
On Jan 23, 2015, at 4:17 PM, Paul wrote:
Did you see American Sniper?
We human beings are particularly good at spilling blood for all manner of reasons. --Paul
Yes, I did. And of course you are correct about human beings, but what is at issue here, as I understand it, is the American capacity to spill blood while playing the victims, ala’ the aftermath of 9/11, and other attacks on us while ignoring their sources in our policies that embrace an all-too-willingness to kill or try to annihilate those we deem our “enemies” or those just in need of some “education” about “democracy!"
American Sniper is as good a piece of propaganda for this mindset as I can imagine. Americans are beset by the “savages” in Iraq for no apparent reason, other than their “savageness” - but we, the USA is not savage, and this despite the fact we invaded a nation that had not attacked us or threatened to, which resulted in the deaths of thousands, if not hundred of thousands, of Iraqi civilians. [Of course, the movie’s scene prior to seeing the sniper join the Navy Seals is of 9/11, but no mention is made that Iraq had anything to do with that.] So, what appears in this story, is a story of American soldiers being attacked savagely by those defending evil Muslims who just “hate us.” It is, once one remembers that our invasion and occupation of Iraq was pure imperialism, based on lies told even by the president, a most astounding retelling of what happened.
And now bumper stickers are being sold that say, “God bless our troops! Especially the snipers!” sometimes followed by a cross. Sounds and looks like a Christian crusade to me. And I must say, to make this situation just another manifestation of “human nature” reminds me of what my mother said to me, a long time ago, when I asked about a priest in our hometown, who had been removed from our parish because of some sexual “indiscretion:” “Peter, priests are just men.” Wow, OK, I got it: Men are pedophiles or sexual deviants and, therefore, “all was good” or, at least, normal. No wonder the church got away with its facilitation of pedophilia for so long.
“Oh well, Peter, we human beings are good at killing so, hey, relax, man. Besides, the Pats are in the Super Bowl again! All is good here or, if it isn’t, it is all ‘normal.’” Tell me, when does our being particularly good at killing, and killing apparently in the name of religion, reach a point where you might be concerned? As you can tell, I have reached that point already……but, of course, I could be wrong. Perhaps “it is all good.”