American Sniper.

I’m not very good at reviews in general so I hope that’s not what you’re expecting.

Tonight, we went to American Sniper staring Bradley Cooper. I’m assuming you’ve heard of it. I don’t have TV and I rarely read the news (which I probably should do more often) and even I’ve heard of it. I’ll leave it up to you to do the research if you still don’t know what its about. You can find a summary on it’s IMDb page here.

Ever since I was little, the war and/or the military in any way, shape, or form didn’t interest me. Most people remember exactly where they were on 9/11. I was in either 5th or 6th grade. I remember a teacher telling me that I needed to remember that day. The TV in the classroom was on. Why did I need to remember this day? Why were we watching TV when we should have been doing English? I’m sure I could do the math and figure out if I was in 5th or 6th but it wasn’t “important” to me at the time. And I’m still trying to figure out its significance in my life. I didn’t feel in danger. I didn’t feel sad or scared. No one bothered explaining it to me I guess and because of that, I suppose I never really put much thought or empathy towards something I had no interest in.

I’m sure I didn’t explain that very well and I’m sure patriots would cringe at my lack of American history but who cares. I’m not afraid to say that I don’t support the war. I don’t know why we needed to ‘get even.’ That’s what it is if you simple it down, isn’t it? Hell, we got more than even. We’ve killed so many more people than we needed to. And having to say “needed to” is disgusting. I’ll never understand why we went to war other than to get even. To prove to the world that we’re some kind of superpower. It’s not something that we should be proud of. I’ll never understand why men and women would choose to put themselves in the situation to be in a war. And quite frankly, I’m tired of hearing the “serving my country” speech.

Before you panic – I’m not anti-America. I love the country I live in. I have a basic understanding that because of our soldiers, we have the freedom we have. But do we really?

I would never, ever sacrifice my life or my sanity for a country. I know this isn’t true for everyone but there is no way of telling how you’re going to come out of the war. If you physically survive being in the military or war itself, the mental side effects that could haunt you for the rest of your life isn’t worth it to me.

Watching the re-enactment of Chris Kyle in American Sniper partially proves my point. American Sniper was a phenomenal movie. It was an eye opener for me. Coming from someone who doesn’t support nor understand why people enter the military at any rank – gave me a view through the eyes of someone who has experienced it. He, as I’m sure many many other men and woman have, put themselves at so much risk and danger. They put their country before their family. I’m sorry if it’s selfish but I could never do that and no matter how hard I try to empathize with those that have, I can’t.

I’ve wanted to write a post about this for so long and getting half way through it, I just can’t seem to say what I want to say. I want people to understand that I’m grateful for being born into a country of freedom. I understand that our ancestors worked their asses off to make this a country worth fighting for. I understand that our country is a target. But I will just never be able to understand why anyone would want to subject themselves to a life of murder and mental suicide.

Sadly, I know people who have only joined for the benefits which is a topic for another day. I also know a strong young woman who fought and survived only to come back with mental turmoil and eventually took her own life. I know a man who served his country only to come back to an empty home because his wife was tired of being second place to America. There are so many reasons people serve and I’ve tried to find appreciation for that but I just don’t know why anyone would do that to themselves out of their own free will.

I wish I could explain it better and honestly, I really do wish I could understand. There are tougher problems in our own country that we could use the man power to solve. I’m trying not to be totally ignorant here because I know that there are world-wide threats to our country and to our citizens. With the technology that we have and how quickly it’s advancing why isn’t our government and military capable of having “missions accomplished” with fewer men and women holding guns and killing people?

With that being said, even though I’m sure you are still cringing and may not fully believe what I’m going to say – I am grateful for the men and women out there like Chris Kyle. I’m grateful that you have more of an understanding for the foundation that our country stands on. I’m grateful for your sacrifice to your life and your families. I send my prayers and hope for your sake to God and anyone else out there listening that with the intelligence and power as a 1st world country, we won’t always have to use murder and violence to solve problems that don’t need to exist. Knowing there is so much hatred in the world is a topic that makes the universe so much more complex than I think was ever intended.

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