Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs


I have calmed down about starting this blog and have decided that this should be interesting if nothing else. My mind is so full of things that touch my life everyday. One at the forefront is an email that was forwarded to me by my son. He is in the Army (has been for over half of his life) and is now in Iraq on his second tour there.

He is a big reader, as am I, or as I like to think I am. Anyway, the email was written in response to a student who did not think the University of Washington should have a memorial to honor a person who killed other people. The person in question here was a UW graduate “Pappy” Boyington who was a U>S> Marine aviator, who earned the Medal of Honor in WWII. This is the email he sent to her. (I have not included the names)

“I read of you ‘student activity’ regarding the proposed memorial to Col. Greg Boyington, USMC and a Medal of Honor winner. I suspect you will receive a bellyful of angry emails from conservative folks like me. You may be too young to appreciate fully the sacrifices of generations of servicemen and servicewomen on whose shoulders you and your fellow students stand. I forgive you for the untutored ways of youth and your naiveté.

It may be that you are, simply, a sheep. There’s no dishonor in being a sheep – – as long as you know and accept what you are. Please take a couple of minutes to read the following. And be grateful for the thousands – – millions – – of American sheepdogs who permit you the freedom to express even bad ideas.”

The following that he asked her to read was an article entitled ON SHEEP WOLVES AND SHEEPDOGS by LTC. (Ret) Dave Grossman, Ranger, PHD and author of ON KILLING.

I found this article online and read it. It made sense to me. The gist of it is this: We are one of three things, sheep, wolves, or sheepdogs. Sheep are the mass majority of people living today. Those who want to lead a nice quite peaceful life and not hurt anyone. Wolves are the killers of innocent sheep (murders, robbers, despot rulers, etc.). And the sheepdogs are the ones who protect the sheep (police, military etc.)

The sheep hate the thought of killing and of violence. They hate it so bad at times that they are in denial of it happening. They are afraid of the wolves. They are even afraid of the sheepdogs, because sometimes the sheepdogs have to resort to violence and killing to protect the sheep. They do not stop to think where they would be if there were no sheepdogs. And they wish they were not there at all. That is until they need them.

For an example, he talked about Columbine and what happened there. How many parents would have been okay with the school placing armed guards in the school? Almost none! But had there been armed and trained guards present the horror might never have happened. When the swat teams went in to Columbine they reported that they had to almost pee; the terrified children off themselves. And at that moment, the sheep did love the sheepdog.

My thoughts on this are: You cannot have it both ways. The sheepdogs cannot be there when we need them and just disappear when we don’t. That is not how it works. It takes hours and hours and sometimes years to be trained to do their jobs. It takes alertness and preparedness at all times to be an efficient sheepdog. This takes sacrifice that most of us have no understanding or appreciation of. If not prepared at all times how would they know when they would be needed? How would they get the job done?

So, I think that America should wake up. True it is that some of the wars we have fought were wrong. We have been lied to about the reasons of going to war. But this I not the sheepdogs fault. You don’t take away his food dish. You don’t try to make him feel shame for doing what he had sworn to do and what he did with honor. You go after the one who is at fault. I leave it to you to decide who that is and what you as a voter can do about it.

But as to the sheepdogs, let us not pay them tribute with only bones. But with all means at our disposal, let us honor the sacrifices they make daily so we may graze in peace.

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