"The other day, my nine year old son wanted to know why we were at war. My husband looked at our son and then looked at me. My husband and I were in the Army during the Gulf War, and we would be honored to serve and defend our Country again today. I knew that my husband would give him a good explanation. My husband thought for a few minutes and then told my son to go stand in our front living room window.
He told him, "Son, stand there and tell me what you see?"
Our son replied, "I see trees and cars and our neighbor's houses."
"OK, now I want you to pretend that our house and our yard is the United States of America, and you are President Bush."
Our son giggled and said, "OK."
"Now, Son, I want you to look out the window and pretend that every house and yard on this block is a different country."
"OK Dad, I'm pretending."
"Now I want you to stand there and look out the window and see a man come out of his house with his wife. He has her by the hair. and he is hitting her. You see her bleeding and crying. He hits her in the face and throws her on the ground. Then he starts to kick her to death. Their children run out and are afraid to stop him. They are crying. They are watching this but do nothing because they are kids and afraid of their father. You see all of this, Son. What do you do?"
"What do you do, Son?"
"I call the police, Dad."
"OK. Pretend that the police are the United Nations. They take your call, listen to what you know and saw, but they refuse to help. What do you do then, Son?"
"Dad...but the police are supposed to help!" My son starts to whine.
"They don't want to because they say it's not their place, or your place, to get involved, and you should stay out of it." My husband explains.
"But Dad...he killed her!" My son exclaims.
"I know he did, but the police told you to stay out of it. Now, I want you to look out that window and pretend you see our neighbor, who you're pretending is al Qaeda, turn around and do the same thing to his children."
"Daddy...he kills them?"
"Yes, Son, he does. What do you do?"
"Well, if the police don't want to help, I will go and ask my next door neighbor to help me stop him." Our son says.
"Son, our next door neighbor sees what is happening and refuses to get involved as well. He refuses to open the door and help you stop him."
"But Dad, I NEED help! I can't stop him by myself!"
"WHAT DO YOU DO, SON?" Our son starts to cry. "OK, no one wants to help you. The man across the street saw you ask for help and saw that no one would help you stop him. He stands taller and puffs out his chest. Guess what he does next, Son?"
"He walks across the street to the old lady’s house, breaks down her door and drags her out. He steals all her stuff and sets her house on fire, and then...he kills her. He turns around and sees you standing in the window and laughs at you. WHAT DO YOU DO?"
"WHAT. DO. YOU. DO?"
Our son is crying and he looks down and he whispers, "I close the blinds, Daddy."
My husband looks at our son with tears in his eyes and asks him... "Why?"
"Because Daddy.....the police are supposed to help people who needs it....and they won't help. You always say that neighbors are supposed to HELP neighbors, but they won't help either...they won't help me stop him...I'm afraid....I can't do it by myself, Daddy.....I can't look out my window and just watch him do all these terrible things and...and.....do nothing...so....I'm just going to close the blinds....so I can't see what he's doing........and I'm going to pretend that it is not happening."
I start to cry. My husband looks at our nine year old son standing in the window, looking pitiful and ashamed at his answers to my husbands questions and he tells him...."Son..."
"Open the blinds because that man.... he's at your front door...WHAT DO YOU DO?"
My son looks at his father, anger and defiance in his eyes. He balls up his tiny fists, looks his father square in the eyes and without hesitation he says, "I DEFEND MY FAMILY, DAD! I'M NOT GONNA LET HIM HURT MOMMY OR MY SISTER, DAD!! I'M GONNA FIGHT HIM, DAD. I'M GONNA FIGHT HIM!!!"
I see a tear roll down my husband's cheek. He grabs our son to his chest, hugs him tight, and cries. Then he whispers, "It's too late to fight him. He's too strong, and he's already at YOUR front door, Son.....you should have stopped him BEFORE he killed his wife. You HAVE to do what's right, even if you have to do it alone. Before it's too late."
This is why we are at war in Iraq. Good people standing by, letting evil happen is the greatest evil of all. Our President is doing what is right. We, as a free nation, must understand that this war is a war for all humanity. We must defeat that evil, so that we can continue to live in a free world where we are not afraid to look out our window. You must never be afraid to do what is right, even if you have to do it alone. So that, in the future, our children will never have to close their blinds."
I couldn't have said it better.
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