The Laws of Rule


Law, Politics, Podcasts



Nov 11, 2011

Imagine photo of memorial to John Lenon, Central Park, New YorkMy grandfather fought. His father fought, as did his. They all survived their wars. As a boy, standing in silence next to my desk at school, I made an effort to remember them, to thank them for risking their lives so that my generation would not have to.

As a teenager, during the Cold War, this sentiment made me an activist against nuclear weapons. It seemed logical that Remembrance Day should be a reminder about the then self-proclaimed function of the military: deterrence, redundance. We have it so we never have to use it. Let’s not, then. Today, that struggle continues.

As an adult, in a world of counter-insurgency, terrorism and perpetual, unnecessary wars, I have learned what it is like to lose friends to this endless violence. And I remember my grandfather as a man who fought alongside his friends. And they died.

I also remember that my grandfather and grandmother fought against war. They were activists. And I remember that, for generations, people have struggled against war.

I have much to be thankful for, to remember on this day. My father did not fight. He did not have to. I did not fight. I did not have to. I have worked much of my life in the hopes that my efforts will ensure my sons will not have to.


Photo: Robin Taylor