The War Prayer | by Mark Twain -
"The War Prayer," a (very) short story or prose poem by Mark Twain, is a scathing indictment of war, and particularly of blind patriotic and religious fervor as motivations for war.
Intervene globally, lose freedom locally. — Robert Higgs
If you read one thing today, make Tolstoy’s letters to Gandhi on why we hurt each other and the truth of the human spirit.
When it can be said by any country in the world, my poor are happy, neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them, my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars, the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive, the rational world is my friend because I am the friend of happiness. When these things can be said, then may that country boast its constitution and government. Independence is my happiness, the world is my country and my religion is to do good. — Thomas Paine (via feellng)
Spanking children slows cognitive development and increases risk of criminal behavior, expert says -
A scientist makes a definitive case against spanking, including how it slows cognitive development and increases antisocial and criminal behavior.
Rudderless and without a compass, the American ship of state continues to drift, guns blazing. — Andrew J. Bacevich, Obama is picking his targets in Iraq and Syria while missing the point (via americanliberationtour)
My Journey From War to Peace | Students For Liberty -
Read. This. Article.
The hate toward the Muslim community was intense amongst us. To us they were a plethora of derogatory names that made them seem like sub-human beings, unworthy to walk amongst us. They were the epitome of evil, and they needed to be eradicated from our world if we ever wished to live peacefully again.
“They,” “Them,” “Us,” these words, these collectivist ideals penetrated deep into our culture, and when these ideas climaxed we no longer saw them as human beings. They became less.
The tipping point, for me, came while I was in Afghanistan interacting with “Them”: the evil doers. I saw for myself what evil looked like, and the most disturbing realization was that I did not see the evil in the people of Afghanistan, but in the mirror.
I learned that “these people” were not evil, and they were not a threat to my family and friends back home. I learned that they were human beings just like me: they loved their families and busted their backs every day to put food on the table. I learned that they were more peaceful than the American people wanted to believe. I learned that the American military was occupying their homes and destroying their crops and livelihoods. I learned that they had absolutely nothing to do with what had happened 8,000 miles away and nine years prior.
States With Medical Marijuana Laws Have Lower Opioid Overdose Rates -
Fatal overdoses involving narcotic painkillers are about 25 percent less common in states with medical marijuana laws than in states that do not allow
“Son, Men Don’t Get Raped” -
Sexual assault is alarmingly common in the U.S. military, and more than half of the victims are men. These are the stories you never hear—because the culprits almost always go free, the survivors rarely speak, and no one in the military or Congress has done enough to stop it.
The moment a man enlists in the United States armed forces, his chances of being sexually assaulted increase by a factor of ten. Women, of course, are much more likely to be victims of military sexual trauma (MST), but far fewer of them enlist. In fact, more military men are assaulted than women—nearly 14,000 in 2012 alone [38 per day]. Prior to the repeal of “Don’t ask, don’t tell” in 2011, male-on-male-rape victims could actually be discharged for having engaged in homosexual conduct. That’s no longer the case—but the numbers show that men are still afraid to report being sexually assaulted.
Military culture is built upon a tenuous balance of aggression and obedience. The potential for sexual violence exists whenever there is too much of either. New recruits, stripped of their free will, cannot question authority. A certain kind of officer demands sex from underlings in the same way he demands they pick up his laundry. A certain kind of recruit rapes his peer in a sick mimicry of the power structure: I own you totally. "One of the myths is that the perpetrators identify as gay, which is by and large not the case," says James Asbrand, a psychologist with the Salt Lake City VA’s PTSD clinical team. "It’s not about the sex. It’s about power and control."