medieval times...of the FUTURE
I too have a lot of respect for the discipline and bravery of Marines and other soldiers. But I've often been surprised, as you alluded to, by how shocked people are when military people do violent things.

First of all, soldiers are trained to be violent and to depersonalize the experience of killing another human being. This is by necessity. One is not likely to be an effective soldier if s/he is not willing to shoot to kill.

Second, many young men and women, especially men, are attracted to the military because they like the idea of shooting guns, blowing stuff up, etc. Don't get me wrong. I'm not suggesting that this is the only motivation for joining the military (financial or lack of other opportunities are probably bigger motivators) or that this penchant for violence is unrestrained or evil. But let's face it, lots of people, especially young guys, like this stuff.

So, you have people with a predisposition for violence trained to kill dispassionately, and sometimes they do inappropriately violent things. And then everyone says, "I would never have expected him to be violent." Duh.
--Max Fri Dec 10 16:51:01 2004
Hey kirk, when I heard the news about Panterra, all I could think about was when we ate lunch at Panera and you said the name reminded you of the band Pantera. (back in the days of Gale Group) It would have been really weird if I'd been in Panera when I heard the news. 
--Pan-Erin Sat Dec 11 00:09:50 2004
Actually, I think we always called it "Pantera" when we'd make lunch plans...
Good times. Gee-whillikers how I miss Gale...
--Kirk Sat Dec 11 09:07:58 2004
Heh, we did! Now we can't use it anymore, just too morbid. I miss Gale, too. So many smart cookies there. Happiest Corporate Environment ever. 

P.S., I decided to start my own liberation group, called Erin's Liberation Front, or ELF for short.  (giggle, snort, couldn't resist pun)
--Pan-ELF-era Sun Dec 12 17:42:08 2004

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