Wednesday, November 15, 2006

War and Peace 2



San Francisco's Veterans Day Parade was held on Saturday the 11th.



A group of old military guys stood on a reviewing stand across from City Hall on Polk Street...



...warmly greeting each contingent...



...including a large band, marchers and leapers from the Falun Gong cult.



There were also large Junior ROTC contingents from various high schools.



These are controversial groups in San Francisco for promoting the military to youth...



...and the programs have just been discontinued by the local school board.



The latter action strikes me as both short-sighted and racist...



...since it's mostly white middle-class folk protesting the ROTC programs...



...and non-gringo youth who are involved in the clubs.



To really change our militaristic culture, maybe the peace activists should go after George Lucas and his "Star Wars" movies and see if they can get them banned...



...since they foster an attitude that war is just one big video game with cool explosions.



People are always going to be fascinated by war and its attendant paraphernalia, and to deny that reality is as absurd as the Renaissance Fair gunmen from Novato above.



Plus, as pure symbolism, the discontinuation of the Junior ROTC is awful and is going to backfire among all the right-wing idealogues who want yet another stick to beat up San Francisco leftists.



It would make more sense to have veterans from groups like "Swords to Plowshares" speak to the teenagers since they come by their peace activism from personal experience.



The speaker on the reviewing stand read the signage from this group as they passed...



..."Bring the Troops Home from Iraq Now"...



...and his commentary afterwards was on the order of "Boy, don't we all wish for that?"



Frank Chiu was there with leftover Daly signage cheering on the marching groups...



...and the veterans who are simply concerned with survival.

1 comment:

markleym said...

I beg to differ about JROTC.

I believe strongly in education - but I do not believe in indoctrinating young minds into militaristic ways. Keep the military out of the schools and off the campuses.

In the last few years our society has been alarmingly militarized and few people seem to notice. Our civil liberties have been attacked.

The America I loved as a child is ceasing to exist and it's high time to do something about it and a good starting place is getting the military out of the schools.