Sunday, August 26, 2007


It took Doonesbury to help me grasp a concept. With most Americans having no "skin" in the game in terms of the war in Iraq and what I believe to be feigned interest, Doonesbury came up with this statement, "emotionally, we outsourced this war--to a professional class that mainstream America has almost no contact with!"

The comic strip is a takeoff on one of the characters who happens to be in Iraq and is questioning the support at home. The players in the Doonesbury strip are dialoging over how to say yes, you are supported when they don't understand or believe.

One comes up with a way to at least let the soldier know they're thinking about him; give him some medals. This is the cruel joke: soldiers get medals for achievement, bravery, for serving. These characters in Doonesbury know nothing about the military as they are the mainstream who have outsourced the war.

From a comic strip comes this great and sad truism.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Recently, I met with a book club to dialogue about my book, Gun Totin' Chaplain. This is the first book club I've done face to face. I had done a few on speaker phone. Lots of fun but nothing like this one. Absolutely delightful.

Most writers who have penned something they feel noteworthy and with a message, are thrilled beyond means when it is actually read. It was read totally with this group. They asked penetrating questions about some of the things I'd said in the book; they wanted to understand what motivated me to go to war when I didn't have too. Did I achieve my goals? Did I think that the church condoned war.

The questions went on and on--we all determined that war is awful and yet while admitting that fact, accepted the premise that most Americans are untouched by our present conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

And, then we started on my favorite subject: AllServe. Would these mothers be willing for their children to serve our great country for 18-24 months if their children had a choice in what and how they would serve, i. e. Peace Corp, Teach America, Habitat for Humanity, Americorps, military or designed their own. Since they had read about the idea in Gun Totin' Chaplain, they understood the concept. Absolutely they were willing for their children to serve.

The session ended with them giving me a cake they had made with AllServe on it. This has spurred me renew my letter and email writing campaign. I'm going to start with Paul Soris and Warren Buffet. These two guys are naturals to me. They've got more money than God and they are willing to give it away (Everybody and his brother's writing them a letter asking for money I'm sure). Plus, it appears that they want to leave some sort of legacy. What greater one than something like a national policy of AllServe.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that we don't have the political will to make choices for the greater good which AllServe is. However, the will to make AllServe a reality sparks a "hope springs eternal" commitment in me. The time is now.