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Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day

Once again, Happy Memorial Day.

10 comments:

Tog said...

Wow. Batshit's coming off exactly like the alcoholic trying to make up for all those times he forgot someone's birthday, with words somebody else wrote (but never with his own actions, heavens no).

Eventually he'll snap out of remorse mode, surly and abusive as usual.

Art imitating life.

exanonymous said...

Looks like Mallard stuck "courage quote" into google.

The 7 virtues according to the faith C.S. Lewis followed:
Prudence, Justice, Temperance, Courage, Faith, Hope, and Love.

While the soldiers demonstrate some of these values, those that are most difficult to keep to and therefore are appropriate for the quote are ones that would dictate a course of action completely inappropriate for our soldiers. Frankly, following some of them would just get soldiers killed, things like "Love" or "Justice" that are extremely difficult and require courage to do in the heat of battle. The mythology surrounding the saints has them doing such things, and they died as a result. I prefer whole, healthy soldiers who come home over dramatic martyrs.

Kip W said...

"What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the Ape in Apricot? Whatta they got that I ain't got??"

"Courage!"

"You can say that again! ...huh?"

rewinn said...

C.S. Lewis is best known for his "Narnia" series, in which God (Aslan) plays games with two little girls while his troops are dying in hopeless battle against the White Witch. This callousness is quite rightly omitted in the movie and even in the book he eventually he shows up to win the battle, so it's all right, at least from the point-of-view of children who don't think too deeply.

This is emblematic of the biggest hole in Lewis' philosophy: a delight in comforting symbols over effectual substance. His work is larded with it, even today's quote.

Naturally, he's popular with the reichwing.

deepbeep said...

I got that same look of incredulity while reading C.S. Lewis' trilemma argument.

Frank Stone said...

You know, if it weren't Memorial Day, I'd suspect Brucie meant for the quotation about courage to be applied to himself.

Oh, who am I kidding? In the fantasyland Brucie inhabits, where he's a Courageous Hero fending off the dark, evil forces of Fascism, Liberalism, Communism, and Rational Thought, EVERY day is Memorial Day -- in honor of him.

WV: Splonmen: Like Navy frogmen, but they swim through the air in slow motion. And they're only visible to those in a booze-soaked stupor.

Kaitlyn said...

Who are we "in memoriam" for?

Tinsley's father/grandfather who was in the military?

The thousands of troops in Afghanistan and Iraq for no real reason?

And I probably said this on Veteran's Day or a year ago - soldiers are not saints. They are human beings.

My parents did not join to "serve their country" and because they were so brave - they joined because it was the only way to make money and get the eff out of podunkville.

My uncle who's been in Iraq for both wars didn't join for noble reasons either - grandma was gonna kick him out.

Yes, some people my age have joined after Sept 11th to serve their countries, but just as many did because it will pay for college.

Memorial Day should not be a "woo! par-tay!" holiday. (Unless you're my sister, but it's probably because everyone has the day off and they're college students not in the military - so every off day is par-tay day.)

rewinn said...

@deepbeep - yep, the "trilemma" is silly enough to make yer eyes cross!

@Frank - thanx for clarifying that. It is indeed rare that a reichwing pundit doesn't fantisize themselves to be a brave brave soldier fighting hordes of cowardly elitist trash fanatics. One wishes the Xbox had come along a generation earlier to keep them busy.

@Kaitlyn - well said! Remember, the chief purpose of maudlin sentimentalism is to free one from actually have to do anything useful. Hey look, Tinshley's weeping tears - let's not ask him to actually condemn our ongoing wars!

exanonymous said...

@Rewinn

Never discuss the Narnia books with die-hard Protestant-Calvinists. Especially the Last Battle, that Tash-worshipping prince who gets into heaven doesn't sit well with them. Apparently the books are flukes and not representative of Lewis's Christian views. It would mean that all those dark-skinned Muslims leaving good, peaceful, and fulfilled lives are going to show up in their lily-white heaven that they were predestined for as evidenced by their birth into a white, Christian family.

I read the Narnia series young and with a healthy dose of Bullfinch's Mythology and Hans Christian Anderson's fairy tale collections on the side. It reads less like religious propaganda (for or against) when you start seeing all the borrowed archetypes mashed together in the fantasy setting. Norse mythology and Gilgamesh don't hurt either. Lewis studied more than just the Bible, despite was "compassionate conservative Christians" these days advocate.

rewinn said...

@exanonymous - well said!

While I don't particularly agree with a lot of Lewis' theology, he did at least try to be humanitarian by his own lights and within his own limitations (...which we all have...). "Narnia" read as a whole is an o.k. novel - my favorite being "A Horse And His Boy" - and the fairness God/Aslan shows towards those who knew only Tash is a fine and correct thing (which is delightfully annoying to the VengefulChrist faction.) I don't like mining Lewis or his brethern e.g. Tolkien for guidance on life but we can still enjoy their stories.