Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

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Support our troops: protest

In case you’ve forgotten, we are currently living in a time of extreme violence. Though it’s hard to believe, men and women from across the world have chosen to meet on battlefield Iraq and fight, die if necessary. This isn’t a war like the kind we’ve read about in textbooks; this is a war removed from our everyday lives. Yet this is something we must face, and it is so imperative that we must face it each day. I write this because of the reactions of our people.

Pro-peace demonstrators rallied and “died” on University Avenue Monday, April 8, impeding traffic for some segment of time. However, the loudest outcry did not come from the protestors but from the whining of those who were personally “inconvenienced.” Certain UW students and Madison residents have written to the Badger Herald complaining about being late for work or an exam because of the demonstrators. If I’m not mistaken, people are dying because of us and our way of life. Whether they’re defending it or attacking it is irrelevant; Americans are directly involved in this war.

And knowing this, it becomes extremely frustrating and disconcerting to know that there are some who would rather bitch about their tardiness for an exam or from work instead of discussing the real issue at hand, war. Instead of crying about our own lives, we should be taking an active part in something that affects us so deeply. Human beings are dying in Iraq for us. They die for our safety, for our principles, for Bush and his government.

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This is not the time to bicker over trivial matters. We need to unify and support our troops, regardless of our personal views. We need to care, we need to be educated and we need to be involved. This fight will change the world from this day forth. So who cares if we’re inconvenienced by some pro-peace or pro-war demonstrators? Let them speak, but more importantly, listen. The more we know, the better decisions we will make about our future.

Some say these protestors accomplished nothing. Firstly, respect their passion because they care more than you, more than me, and more than most people. Secondly, why do you think they do drastic things like Monday’s display? Maybe the antagonists are right, no one changed their minds. But that’s not because they weren’t successful but because people like us have failed. We didn’t change our minds because we never had any independent thoughts in the first place. We aren’t questioning or learning more about this war, so how could we hear them? We don’t know enough and we’re not searching for answers.

I am as frustrated with myself as I am with those who missed the beginning of their work and their exam. However, I’m not upset about my own small life, but rather because I too have failed with my silence and ignorance. I am angry that we care so much about our own lives that we can’t see the “big picture.” Exams and workdays will remain days after tomorrow, but people’s lives in this war will not.

While we like to avoid the image of death by hiding in our daily affairs, we must not because we’re at war too. Our individual lives are insignificant in comparison with what we can do while we’re here. I believe when given that choice, most people would rather be involved in life than watch it pass by.

Although this war is not being fought on American soil, it should be battled here at home. Americans soldiers are fighting this war with guns, but we, as American citizens and humanitarians, must be fighting this war with words and ideas. We need to be as involved and have the same passion, and we need to do this together. Every day there should be rallies/demonstrations from both sides, so that the doors to communication can be opened. We can no longer watch television and believe we’re doing our part. That is not enough. Americans need to share their information and vocalize their beliefs.

Perhaps we alone cannot change the course of this war, but we can inform this country and the world how we, as Americans, feel about what our government is doing. In order to make change, we must understand and care; we need to take action. So my question to everyone who reads this is: Do you care that men and women are dying, and dying for you?

Nathaniel Chin ([email protected]) is a freshman majoring in genetics and business management.

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