JOIN VNN COLUMNIST TEAM | SIGN UP FOR NEWSLETTER
VETERANS NEWS NOW ON : FACEBOOK | TWITTER | FORUM
|

“Daddy, what is a Drone?” A Bedtime Story

How then to tell a daughter this truth when in fact she will in time know that he is the one who decides who will live and who will die, which children will be scattered over the landscape…

 

by William A. Cook

 

Daddy, what is a Drone?

The question jolted him out of his lethargy as he suddenly sat upright in the soft chair he had slumped into when she came for “her time with Daddy.” It had the ring of a catechism question; “What is God, Daddy?” How does one answer that without a torrent of other questions cascading from this innocent mouth one after another?  His first impulse was to ignore it; his second, to discombobulate the response with obfuscation, to deflect the question with words she could not understand; his third, to respond directly to her question, to speak the truth knowing that she would not comprehend the intricacies of the policies that legalize the use of drones.

He remembered the story of Hawthorne’s good Dr. Grim who had to address a similar question when Little Ned asked him, “Whence came I here and why?” Indeed, the good doctor answered honestly, truthfully, bluntly, and, dare we say it, wisely.

“Whence did you come? Whence did any of us come? Out of the darkness and mystery, out of nothingness; out of a kingdom of shadows; out of dust, mud, clay, I think, and to return to it again. Out of a former state of being, whence we have brought a good many shadowy revelations, purporting that it was not a very pleasant one. Out of a former life, of which the present one is hell.

And why are you come? Faith, Ned, he must be a wiser man than Doctor Grim who can tell you why you or any other mortal came hither; only one thing I am well aware of, —it was not to be happy. To toil and moil and hope and fear; and to love in a shadowy, doubtful sort of way, and to hate in bitter earnest, —that is what you came for.”

“Daddy, what is a Drone?” she asked again, noticing his sudden reaction and his hesitancy.

“Darling, I think your mother called; yes, I’m certain. Please go to her and we’ll talk about this later.”

He sagged back into the chair as she left the room conscious that he was no Doctor Grim though the power of Doctor. Grim’s cynical answer to Ned held an unexplainable fascination for him as it sprung to mind when his daughter asked her question. Perhaps Hawthorne had responded for his character because he had grappled with the consequences of the world that surrounded him as he tried desperately to bring closure to this last novel that eluded a meaningful ending.

He sat there musing, recalling that Hawthorne had gone ‘to see the war,” to attempt to understand what it was and why, so he travelled by buggy to Washington “to see the war.” And he saw it, upfront and personal: brother slaughtering brother, the ideals of this new, innocent nation built on such mighty principles of equality for all, of laws that protect all, where the corruption of Europe and thousands of years of wars and devastation, of barbarism and savagery could not taint this new Eden where each could achieve as he or she desired, as he, Hawthorne had determined was the meaningful end of his last novel, The Marble Faun. Hawthorne realized that the world around him had gone mad: the Confederates fought to protect a medieval system of privilege and slavery while the north had capitulated to survival of the fittest and cut throat Capitalism. The evils of Europe had come home to roost.  

Daddy sat there ruminating on Dr. Grimshawe’s “kingdom of shadows” and the “dust, mud, clay” and the hell that is the life we live, “to toil and moil and hope and fear” and, above all, and, oh, how pitiful and absolute the truth of it, “to hate in bitter earnest.” Strange how the world has not changed since the Civil War; we simply move the war elsewhere, manufacture schisms, fracture governments, supplant elected officials with western puppets, support dictators with weapons of mass destruction to carry out our will, buy off the representatives of the people, and create laws that erase individual rights while proclaiming we do God’s will.

How then to tell a daughter this truth when in fact she will in time know that he is the one who decides who will live and who will die, which children will be scattered over the landscape as they scramble for the detritus of human waste in the dumps that litter the hills and valleys in Pakistan or Afghanistan or Palestine, which mothers and daughters and sons may be the accidents of the Tuesday night gathering of enlightened men when they decide to do what drones do in the silence and darkness and mystery of the kingdom of shadows that hovers above all the living and the dead. How explain the unexplainable when she asks the next question:” Daddy, who tells the computer when to fire a missile?” “Daddy, why don’t these people get arrested and charged with their crimes?” “Daddy, why don’t you use the courts and the laws of the country?” “Daddy, who is God? Are you God, Daddy? Who made you God, Daddy?”

As he listened in silence to the unuttered words of his daughter, he gave utterance to Dr. Grimshawe’s response to Little Ned:

“And why are we come? Faith, my Darling, I am not a wiser man than Doctor Grim and  I can’t tell  you why you or any other mortal came hither; like Dr. Grim, only one thing I am well aware of, —it was not to be happy. To toil and moil and hope and fear; and to love in a shadowy, doubtful sort of way, and to hate in bitter earnest, —that is what you came for and as long as I am the determiner, that is the way it will be.”


Prof. William A Cook is author of The Rape Of Palestine: Hope Destroyed, Justice Denied, Tracking Deception: Bush Mid-East Policy and The Chronicles Of Nefaria. The Plight of the Palestinians: a Long History of Destruction.

Also see:

Short URL: http://www.veteransnewsnow.com/?p=223673

The views expressed herein are the views of the author exclusively and not necessarily the views of VNN or any other VNN authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors or partners and technicians. Notices

Austins School of Spa Technology
ME Online
slow aging


Posted by on May 15 2013, With 0 Reads, Filed under Civil Liberties, Corruption, Cost to the US, Editors' Picks, Expert Viewpoints, Foreign Policy, Government, Legislation, Politico. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS

To post a comment, you must login using Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, or Hotmail in the box below.
Don't have a social network account? Register and Login direct with our site and post your comment.
Before you post, read our Comment Policy - Legal Notice

Comments Closed

Comments are closed

 

Email Newsletter icon, E-mail Newsletter icon, Email List icon, E-mail List icon Join Our Daily Newsletter
  View Newsletter ARCHIVE

WHAT'S HOT

  1. Trucking Network Hiring Now
  2. The Truthseeker: Ukraine Gangster State Calls for ‘Nuclear Strikes’ (E42)
  3. Ads Against Apartheid ‘ONE WORD’ ad campaign launched in Boston
  4. Cuban Missile Crisis Redux. Where are the wise men?
  5. HARDtalk — An Intellectual Ambush Masquerading as Truth
  6. Terror in the skies, another tool in Washington’s arsenal
  7. A Band-Aid Approach to Fixing the V.A.
  8. Ukraine crisis far worse than Cold War
  9. Itching for a Genocide
  10. HARDtalk Speaks to Israeli historian, Ilan Pappe
  11. What’s going on in Iraq? Part 2 Interview with Snorre Lindquist and Lasse Wilhelmson
  12. Iran representing regional harmony
  13. The Democrats Are Finally Turning Away from Israel And it’s high time they did
  14. Electric Company Hiring Today
  15. International Food Company Hiring
  16. UN: ISIL have created dangerous situation for Iraqi children
  17. World Cup Star Cristiano Ronaldo refuse to exchange Jersey with Israel players
  18. Algeria to donate World Cup prize money to Gaza
  19. Air Ambulance Network Hiring Today!
  20. The Death of Independence
  1. Debbie Menon: Thanks Rex. Well said. “Would love to know your assessment of the number of “brave, American...
  2. rexw: Hello Catbird Seat. Would love to know your assessment of the number of “brave, American Jews” that...
  3. Debbie Menon: Whatever works!
  4. rexw: It is hard not to view this ‘interview’ from the BBC of all organisations, (remember the Mavi Marmara BBC...
  5. rhys: I am in support of all the people and their comments. This should ram home the clear and obvious fact that the...

Apply for VA Home Loan Now!

Military Veterans Radio

Archives