By Dave Patterson / San Diego Veterans for Peace
Summer is around the corner in San Diego and many of us look forward to the annual traditions, like the Miramar Air Show.
This wildly popular event attracts an estimated 500,000 attendees, and brings people from all over the world to see the pilots demonstrate their precision flying and perhaps line up purchases of weapons. Corporate chalets are available where weapons vendors can “Use their company logo and message to reach 500,000 Air Show attendees!” This, of course, is all while real military people risk their lives to entertain the crowd.
More sinister is the unabashed promotion of war to our youth, prevalent throughout the show. In 2016, they had a Drone strike simulator, where kids could get their faces painted and simulate a Drone strike against terrorists. Kids being cheered for killing terrorists’ dead on a dirt road in the Middle East brings full circle how our government is desperate to recruit, and desensitizing kids to killing is a necessary element.
San Diego Veterans For Peace is working to challenge people’s perception of what is really happening at the Miramar Air Show.
It’s thrilling and fun, there’s no argument there. But is it really OK to teach our kids that killing people by remote control is acceptable — or a perversion of a tyrannical state?
The following short documentary, Disneyland of War argues that the “U.S. government is manipulating children to think that war and violence is fun and glorious.” We don’t disagree. [Trigger warning: contains some graphic combat scenes.]
Our effort is to change people’s minds regarding the purpose and methods in use at the airshow. All we ask is that between now and September, when the airshow is slated to take place, the public consider our arguments against attending.
And if they agree, just don’t go!
Dave Patterson is Past President of San Diego Veterans For Peace, and can be contacted at