No cleanliness in war, end the glamour

Bryan Eberly and Bryan Eberly

I want to talk about war.

War is evil. War is wicked. War’s only purpose is the killing of people on either side of any given battlefield. War is blood. War is pain. War is death. War is not PG-13.

I recently saw the movie “Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2.” It was appalling. Not in the sense of how it should have appalled me. No. I was appalled by the audacity of war being made to fit a PG-13 rating.

There was very little blood. There was very little screaming. No carnage of any kind. It was actually very clean, so to speak.

A man has his legs blown off by a land mine. No blood.

A woman gets shrapnel to the leg. No blood. No screaming.

Several people are literally ripped apart. No blood. Some screaming. The guy at the end was laughing, actually.

Bombs tear apart a city. Bombs blow people up. There are bullets being sprayed into a crowd.

No blood. Mild screaming. Very little carnage if any at all.

That’s not war.

Don’t get me wrong here. I am not some lover of gore. I am not a hardcore fan of violence. I don’t actually want to see the real effects of war.

Basically, because I already have. I have seen people shot. I have seen people blown up. I have helped spray blood out of a Humvee after an IED ripped through it.

I have heard the screams. I have been through war.

What I saw on the screen was not war. It was clean entertainment. Gripping and thrilling, and absolutely disgusting in how it was portrayed.

It brought to mind how desensitized the American public allows themselves to be in regards to war. I brought this up a few semesters ago, but it bears repeating.

America doesn’t seem to grasp what war is, which is frightening considering we are the constant victors in a perpetual supposed “war on terrorism,” and have been both committing and suffering horrendously violent acts for more than a decade now.

But I don’t think the American public, by and large, gets it. (Excuse my collectivism here).

For the American public, war has become bumper stickers. It has become catch phrases for politicians. It has become beer commercials and restaurants celebrating and gifting veterans. It has become country songs. War is being ignored.

So let me take the time to remind you what war actually is. I realize that this is a very weak platform for such a thing, because you can just stop reading at anytime, or flip the page and read about the hockey or basketball team’s latest loss.

Or you’ll just fold up the paper and either throw it away or put it back on the newsstand. So, I’m going to go ahead and let loose a little bit with my descriptions. Trigger warning, I suppose.

War is a suicide bomber running into a crowd and detonating himself or herself. The result of this is limbs, blood and viscera surrounding a burning caldera.

Broken glass and rubble from destructed buildings. Men, women and children screaming out in agony.

Imagine, war as a team of Marines releasing a firestorm of rounds in a city street. Insurgents and allied forces both receive bullets tearing through their bodies. Blood spews, muscles detach, bone splinters and fragments fly out.

War is a bomb or a missile from an aircraft or drone hitting a hospital in order to take out supposed enemy forces within. Blood, body parts and viscera. Fire. Wounded children shrieking in pain. Imagine it.

Again, imagine it. Because that is what is going on in today’s battlefields and

My point in all of this is simple. We can’t let war become an after thought. We can’t let war become status quo. We can’t just live our daily lives without giving attention to the atrocities committed against us and by us.

If you glean nothing else from my columns this semester, glean this: you can help stop war. Your tax dollars pay for it. Your votes elect people who call for it.

Your apathy is certainly not doing anything but letting it continue.

What are you going to do about it? End war now.