Today marks the 66th anniversary of the United States dropping an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima. When I reflect back on WWII and the reasons for the war, I am not only saddened by the horrific number of lives lost in both the Pacific and European theaters, but I am rather disgusted that many Americans have lost sight of why we fought in WWII.
We entered the Pacific Theater only when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, never mind that they were killing thousands of Chinese before this. People probably won’t want me to bring up the fact that here in the United States we kept thousands of Japanese-Americans detained in interment camps, as well as Americans who “looked” Japanese.
It does not seem that long ago when I was watching 60 minutes at my step-mother’s house and they were showing the horrible effects of the bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki 30 years after the bombings. People were dying from leukemia caused by radiation poisoning from the atomic bombs. For those that have not read Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, I strongly encourage you to do so.
In the European Theater, we were trying to stop the unimaginable Holocaust and the 11 million deaths resulting from the Nazis. As a side note, one should mention that Rudolf Brazda died Wednesday. Brazda is believed to be the last surviving man to wear the pink triangle — the emblem homosexuals had to wear and that were sent to Nazi concentration camps, most of them sent to their deaths.
We entered the war to fight back the cloak of Naziism and Fascism. We considered ourselves to be better than the oppressors we were fighting. The irony is palpable when you think about our government today and about The Teahadists, who think like, behave like, speak like, Fascists. I mean really, who signs a pledge to commit to hurting a population–to promise to discriminate against an already marginalized and bullied people? Well, now four of the Republican Presidential candidates have signed that pledge.
It seems painfully obvious that we have not learned the lessons of history. As the Teahadists follow in the footsteps of the former President worked hard to move the United States into a Theocracy, the original notion of religious freedom seems to be conveniently forgotten in the face of Bachmann et al. purporting to want to return to the “original constitution.” Is there just one brain that all the Republican candidates have to share and they can’t keep up with whose turn it is?
Today, as I remember all the lives lost specifically in Hiroshima, and the current path of the government in the United States, I shall endeavor to make a thousand paper cranes in the hope that our elected officials know history and know how to lead with compassion, integrity, and with the interest of the American people guiding them, not just white heterosexual christians, but ALL of the American people.