Sunday, February 17, 2013

Why do beauty contestants wish for world peace?

As a kid, who had no idea about what wars meant, I remember being confused when we were told that we might have to turn out the lights and go dark during the 1971 war with Pakistan.  Yes, even though we lived in a town that was far, far away from Pakistan!

The following summer, or was it a year after that, when we were in Pattamadai to spend our school vacation time with the grandmothers, we kids were thrilled to listen to stories from the battlefront, narrated under the stars--the narrator was practically a family member, who was an army "javaan."

Of course, it was only later in life did I come to know that he was not anywhere near the front itself!  The older we get, the more we learn about the un-truths; turns out we live in a world of truthiness!

But, other than during those childhood years, I have never been a fan of war and violence.  I was a graduate student at USC when Bush, Sr., decided to liberate Kuwait from Saddam's invasion, and I joined the anti-war rallies at the campus square by Tommy Trojan.  War was not the answer, as far as I was concerned.

Into my adulthood, I have become more and more of a pacifist, and even people yelling and screaming is a huge turnoff anymore.  There are certainly plenty of ways in which we can express disagreements without resorting to violence in words and, definitely, in action.

Reading Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms and re-reading Catch-22 further convinced me that war is hell. War supporters are almost always, in Joseph Heller's words, the scum of the earth.

But, for all those who are pressed for minutes and seconds in these modern times, there is no one better to succinctly explain the idiocy of war than Calvin himself.

No, not John Calvin, but the one who walks around with Hobbes.  No, not that Hobbes either :)
If only Watterson hadn't retired!  Oh well ....
So, why war all the time?
Yep, stupid!  Hellishly stupid!


Ramesh said...

Ah well, who said beauty and brains go together :)

War is truly the most awful of humanity's actions. Unfortunately war is romanticized in drawing rooms - its at the front that you see the absolute horror of it.

Sriram Khé said...

What? I thought I had in me both beauty and brains!!! ;)

Now the drones are further separating the pro-war people from the killing and destruction of property ... terrible ...

Gowrisankar said...

The reptalian brain over which human brain has evolved is the culprit. The reptalian brain is just programmed and hard wired to fight, flight, feed and reproduce. If human beings still think aggression is the way out to show their superiority they have sadly mistaken, they have not evolved yet and they are just exhibiting the reptalian behavior. Love and affection can win people totally than trying to conquer them.