Saturday, September 10, 2005

Got Honor?

I know I have written on this topic before, and I'm sure it will be of interest again. I am in the process of reading a sci-fi novel, something that rarely interests me. What struck me in this book, and frequently a theme throughout the science fiction/fantasy genre, is a belief in honor. Such a foreign word to us now, perhaps it is the reason why some of us do not read sci-fi/fantasy. It seems something only those who have lost touch with reality can embrace. With the recent flooding in the South, and even my posts on control and power, I realize why we have such a negative view on people. This concept of honor is no where to be found....or so we believe. The behaviors of some of the "victims" of the hurricane have been atrocious, which only serves to affirm our doubt in humanity. Our beliefs that those in power will surely abuse it at some point, whether intended or not, gives us fear and disrespect towards those whom we place there. There is no longer a belief in honor among us. When was the last time someone promised you something, said they would do something, perhaps even gave their word, and it did not come to pass? Our excuses are rampant, and I'm as guilty as the next. Words roll off our tongues, with little consideration of their truth. It is not that we mean to lie....we would rather protect ourselves than others, though, and that is where the problem lies. For you do not usually see those whom you disappoint when you don't keep your word - but you get the comfort of seeing/hearing their pleasure when you give it. We are turning into a more self-centered people, with our interests soley based on our own comfort. We dare not give guilt or negative feelings to ourselves, as our precious self-esteem might waver, our comfort zone might be stretched, and our interests might have see the light of day beyond our selfish borders. Have you ever had a conversation with someone who is not in the military, about those who are in the military? Those of us who enjoy our freedoms as we traverse our communities often do not understand why anyone would risk their lives....perhaps we just can't understand it, no matter how grateful we are. When you discuss why someone would do it, often you hear things like a paid education, military benefits, more opportunities for jobs and homes. Rarely do you hear the reason that perhaps these people want to protect their homes and families. Yet I've known several men and women whose reason for entering the military was because they felt they had to do something more - had to offer protection, had to give back. It's called honor. It is called giving your word and meaning it. It is called having character. It is called believing in a higher purpose, in an ideal, and while it may never fully be attained, it is worth working towards. Anyone who believes in a religion should know something about that. It is about holding ourselves to a higher standard than what society would have us believe is possible. I believe it is. Do you?