Why are we led by fools with weapons?

A quick post. I was thinking yesterday, seeing the news about America's (Trump's?) strikes on Syria, why don't more people speak against war? Why are our countries led by mindless fools using weapons to resolve disputes?

I'm sure most people - the ones I know at least - don't support violence as a means to resolve disputes and specifically teach their children not to do that (although my grandsons LOOOVE playing with pretend guns). So why do we allow our leaders to do that?

I know I've protested so many times against war for so many years. I guess the culmination, which I've probably written about on the other blog, and have certainly mentioned on Twitter, was the anti-Iraq war protest, the big one in Melbourne, with 200,000 people, in 2003 I think. The only protest on which all three of my kids have joined me, and one hich was totally and blatantly ignored by John Howard.

The majority of people - not just in Melbourne, but in Australia as I recall - did not support that war. And yet our government just went ahead and committed us. And what a disaster it was. Now Malcolm Turnbull supports air strikes in Syria, and again there is no debate, no democratic accountability.

This situation is absolutely wrong, and yet it keeps happening. I've been puzzling my head about why, and I keep coming up with different impressionistic things: the boys playing with guns, debates I had with men on Crooked Timber, the way I was ridiculed and eventually banned on Crooked Timber - and I form an impression - two impressions - or maybe 'questions' is better:

 - most? - many? - men still believe that violence is the ultimate way of resolving disputes (and how many women?)
- most? - many? - quite a few? - men don't see women's voices as having legitimacy in debates over war, and will only listen to them if they agree with and support men's positions. Women who take anti-war, pacifist positions are considered well-meaning but irrelevant, and if they persist in trying to put their views and argue with men, they will be treated with contempt and deliberately excluded from conversations.

Women's ultimate role in patriarchal systems is to keep things going, to keep having and raising kids, to keep the home fires burning during wars, to make sure there is a home to come home to. That's the assumption it all rests on - that someone is keeping life going. You couldn't have wars if there wasn't that assumption. But that's all that women are supposed to do in patriarchal systems. They are not supposed to question the wisdom of patriarchy.  Many, many of those guys I've argued with would say they don't believe in patriarchy, and yet they were happy to silence me. Interesting.

Ok if this is not about gender, I'd like to see the argument. What is it about? Why can't we have serious debates about violence and war? Why do our leaders (the mindless violent bloody fools) think they can just support wars or take us into wars (or acts of international aggression) without getting even parliamentary support?


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