Jan 222006

I was saddened to read Tim Waddingham's article in Wednesday's Collegian, entitled "Collateral damage: a necessary evil," which justifies the killing of 18 innocent Pakistanis in the War on Terror.

It saddens me to read this just two days after commemorating the birthday of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whose quest for civil rights was founded upon a platform of non-violence.

A strategy of non-violent protest is truly revolutionary, and much more difficult, than violent retaliation because it requires us to swallow our pride, let go of anger and quit seeking revenge. This does not deny nor undermine our strength, or the need for justice.

In fact, it makes us stronger. Dr. King said, "Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time; the need for mankind to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence. Mankind must evolve for all human conflict a method that rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love."

Can we consider this perspective, even for a minute? Can we feel love for those labeled "collateral damage?"

Rather than reminding us of the tragedy of 9/11 (how could we forget?!), reminding us that we should be angry, and need to strike back, can we also remember Dr. King?

Benjamin Lenth


graduate student

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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