Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Sorry We Raised Our Kids To Kill

A meeting of the committee of the Mothers of the Disappeared. San Salvador, 1979. [Credit:Susan Meiselas]
Dear mothers around the world,
Last weekend I heard a young woman share a poem explaining to her mother why she wouldn't go to church with her on Sunday morning. The daughter had lost her faith in the Christian God in response to atrocities in her native El Salvador. There was a lot of anger in her poem.

She was not angry with her mother. She was sad at disappointing her again with the news that she wouldn't be able to bring herself to go with mom to church. But she was going to remain true to her own beliefs.
Ziba, a mother in Afghanistan, with her baby at a clinic. Infant and maternal mortality there are among the highest in the world after more than a decade of U.S. occupation.
I, too, feel angry. I am very angry about my government stealing from poor people around the world in order to buy weapons to kill other poor people.

They do this under many guises, but one of the most disgusting is their claim that their agenda is promoting rights for women, including education for girls.

22nd Annual Women’s Memorial March in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, Feb 14, 2013.
I know my government no longer represents the people. It never did, because it grew from the bloody ground where indigenous grandmothers had been disrespected. Disrespecting them and their wisdom about how to live on the earth was the first misstep down the road to universal human misery amid ecological collapse.

Dear mothers, I am sorry we in the USA have raised our children to kill another mother's child.

Would it surprise you to know that the mothers here have not been listened to here? That the grandmothers and their wisdom have not been honored? Only women who swear fealty to the death machine are allowed in as token females in the halls of power.

And a pack of idiots are at the controls of the most lethal war weapons ever devised.

Men stand guard over your sons who are imprisoned forever on the grounds of being un-white and Muslim. My country has built special prisons -- at Guantanamo, at Bagram, in Indiana and many other places -- where your husbands, fathers, uncles, nephews and cousins are held incommunicado for years.
My country enables Israel which imprisons your children, torturing them, shooting tear gas canisters at their heads, and humiliating them at checkpoints and in the very homes where soldiers awaken them in the night. My country enables Israel to bomb Gaza, to bomb Syria, to assassinate, to steal the land and water, to bulldoze olive groves, to wall off one side of your family from the other side. Mothers of Palestine, I am sorry.

I am sorry, mothers of Afghanistan. Your suffering these thirty years has been funded by the taxes they take from my paycheck every week. You starve and freeze in refugee camps, unable to save your children, while U.S. soldiers eat hamburgers and watch t.v. before going on night raids to terrorize you. The warlords who bombed you before the U.S. invasion have now been fattened by suitcases of dollars  and fields of opium money. I am sorry you have not been able to protect your families from the greed and violence of my dying culture.

Iraqi Birth Defects Worse than Hiroshima

by Rania Khalek on March 20, 2013 (Dr Samira Alani/Al Jazeera])
Mothers of Iraq, I am sorry. You bear children deformed by depleted uranium and white phosphorus weapons that made the 0.01% very, very wealthy. You mourn for the lost hopes of a son who was at university, for the daughter who turned to prostitution to feed your family.

Syrian mothers, how great is your suffering and how can I apologize enough to you? The plans to invade Syria were with the U.S. army when it swept into Iraq ten years ago, but it has taken this long for the puppet masters to mount their proxy war. I am sorry we have sent so many weapons to your country, arming all sides to generate profit, bloodshed and suffering.

Mothers of Yemen, Bahrain, Somalia, Philippines, Mexico, Colombia, Haiti, Okinawa -- I apologize for what the U.S. and its soldiers and drones and bombs and guns have done to your children.

Decades ago a woman in the U.S. who organized to end slavery sent out this call to mothers all around the globe. Julia Ward Howe's Proclamation began, “Arise, then, women of this day!” and contained a pledge I affirm today: “I will not raise my children to kill another mother's child.”

But the sick culture of rape and guns for preschool kids and torture prisons and lies dominates our airwaves, loudly and falsely proclaiming that we are "free." Officially, we are exceptional, because anything we do is justified by our "superior" culture, proven by our "success" at hogging the planet's resources. We have 5% of the world's population and we maintain 700+ of military bases all over the globe. The Pentagon is the biggest single polluter on Earth. It burns oil to steal oil in order to keep burning oil to steal more. Along the way it steals your daughter's virginity and your elderly mother's peace of mind.

I am sorry we raised our kids to kill. We are in a death spiral, taking many of you down with us. Please don't hate us. We are so desperately in need of the healing touch of a mother's love.

1 comment:

Anne G. Woodhead said...

This post is absolutely wonderful! Thank you so much. My thoughts, too. You express them so well.