Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Field Is Empty

Scott Bradley


"What if they had a war and no one came?"

I don't think I have ever really appreciated the sentiment of this bumper sticker until now, when I have decided to turn it to my purposes. It seems incredibly naive in the context of geo-political realities, but how about in the context of inter-personal realities?

Everything you ever needed to know, you learned in nursery school, the refrain goes. It takes two to tango. It takes two to fight. Two wrongs don't make a right.

We like to fight. We like to argue. We like that we should be right and others wrong. We like to affirm ourselves in the denial of others.

Picture the field of battle. Empty. No one has shown up. Oh, someone came, spoiling for a fight. Rattled her shield. Denounced the cowardly other. But no one answered the challenge. Instead, the lonely would-be combatant watched a gopher pull a weed into the earth while a red-tailed hawk soared above, and then drifted away to more productive pursuits.

Was there ever really anything worth fighting about? Would it have made any difference — win, lose, or draw? Are the values we seek to be found in conflict? Could the truth we seek yell, We Win!? Or is it a quality, and altogether alien to conflict and strife?

Let's play football instead. You're skins, we're shirts. No, you're skins, we're shirts!

You can check out Scott's other miscellaneous writings here.

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