By Stan Levin
Listen up, young man (aka dude) …. yes, You,
If you can stop texting for a few minutes,
and hear me out. I don’t want to shout.
You are nearing your prime,
and you’re thinking maybe it’s your time
Why? Because you have come to believe a mantra …that your country “needs you”, to “keep us safe”,
and besides, you need a job.
If you Go
you will learn new skills from military experts
(whom you will intuitively admire and want to emulate),
like how to “deploy” different kinds of deadly weapons ….
Aka’s and mortars, and grenades for your pitching arm.
And how to obey without asking questions,
and how to march, and do double-time.
And you can wear your spotless fatigues everywhere,
and you will sport a growing array of medals and ribbons
to display and adorn the breasts of your uniforms.
People you do not know will “thank you for your service”
and you will be offered discounts everywhere,
and life will be grand for the decision you made, it’s very heady.
Then you will get to travel, all expenses paid,
to places where you have never been,
and where you can fine-tune your new “skills.”
And unknowingly “help” your country expand its empire.
(Which you are not likely to consider at the moment)
But, my young friend,
if you should decide Not to Go …..
You will not get to visit places of legend ….
Like Syria and Yemen and Somalia and Iran and Iraq
And you will not commit atrocity by command,
without questioning, without wavering, without hesitation,
Women and children and old people whom you don’t know
who, no threat to you or your country will not suffer by your hand.
And you will not lose new friends you have made,
by most horrific means and manners you can’t even imagine.
You will not return home with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
You will have no encounter with a land mine,
and lose your sight,
and leave your legs in the sand of Afghanistan.
Don’t be conned by those who, unlike yourself, have nothing to lose and a great deal to gain by your sacrifice, the Arms Industries.
I recommend you pass.
Resist that impulse …. Don’t Go, son.
Stay home …. Please