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OK, so there won't be a LOT on here about sex, but tell the truth, that's most of the reason you entered this site, right? So, I'll slip some things in from time to time just to keep you coming...back.

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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Steel Cage Match of Quaker Values: Where does strict adherence to the Peace Testimony rank?

Sometimes I wonder which of my Quaker values is strongest and sometimes I find out that it might be best if I don't know.

Trev informed me the other night that he needed to buy some little plastic soldiers for a diorama he was making for school, something to do with the Revolutionary War, and that he had been told they could be found at CVS.

I proclaimed to all who would listen, which pretty consisted of Trev and Cheryl, that I as The Dad, knew they would be far more likely found at Toys R Us, so I stopped there on the way home from work last night. After looking high and low, and believe me, at that store there are plenty of highs and lows to look at, and not finding any small diorama-worthy soldiers, I asked a cute stockgirl and she pointed me to the one place they had them. Thanking her, I picked them up, a veritable Tub O' Soldiers, priced at $19.99. Twenty bucks for a homework assignment!

As I walked to the checkout counter, tub in hand, I started to think more about just it was I was doing. An outrage, I declared to all who were listening, well, in my head. An outrage that my Quaker child was being forced to buy soldiers, glorifying the military and so much that we Friends oppose. This sort of thing just lends credence to the idea that violence is the solution to all problems and that guns are an acceptable part of our public education. And besides, the soldiers looked to be too big and cost too damn much, dammit.

I decided that when I got home, I'd suggest to Trev, that instead of displaying the soldiers, that he place little crosses instead, showing the ugliness of war, that the mainstream media rarely reports on anymore.

On my way home, I thought I'd just stop in at the CVS, to make sure they didn't have them, and maybe to prove to all who might listen again that The Dad Knows Best, but alas, not only did they have them and not only were they a more appropriate size, but they only cost $3.29!

$3.29 - hmm, not so bad. What's a few soldiers on an innocent historical diorama. That's fine - I'll take 'em.


  1. I've been thinking about the quaker testimony on non-violence as it applies to (of all things) roller derby. I took, and then taught, a tae kwon do class at Earlham college. I was never sure if what I was doing was contrary to Quaker values (you shall not fight!) or completely congruent with Quaker values (you shall know yourself, control yourself, and respect yourself and others!)

    Semantic wrassling with the actual words "All bloody principles and practices we do utterly deny, with all outward wars, and strife, and fightings with outward weapons", seems kind of disingenous when you go "well, it's not OUTWARD weapons..."

    I wonder what the arguments were for and against playing football at Westtown -- was the testimony on violence aired then?

  2. Interesting, John. If it helps any, after much verbal rasslin', Downingtown Meeting recently approved the use of the schoolhouse for a weekly martial arts class.

    I forget why football was dropped...or never started at Westtown, but I think I remember that the dangers involved were a factor, back when then President Teddy Roosevelt got involved in encouraging the regulation of football because guys were dying form playing, due to its violence and lack of protection for the participants.

    And thanks, Shezzerrooni!