Well, given all of that, what, uh, given these causes, what, uh, uh, how do you see the possibilities of any kind of reconciliation, and what are the dimensions of reconciliation?
(breathes heavily) Okay, um, what do I want to say here? You want somethin' crisp. So (pause) (meow) Hi, Greebie. Um well, I'll just run it and see what happens. I think the important thing (meow) to recognize after a war like this...
The important thing to recognize, that alter a war like this, nobody came out smelling like a rose. Uh, I have a, I have a buddy who didn't go who called me one day and said, uh, "Look, I, I finally have to talk to you because every time I see you, I feel uncomfortable. The day I went down for my draft exam, I took a lot of drugs so I looked freaky and they wouldn't take me, and every time I see you, I'm reminded that somebody went in my place."
And I had a long talk with him about that, and, uh, I told him that I signed up for the things that I thought would make best use of my own talents, which was intelligence, only to come back a few years later and realize that a lot of guys had a much harder time than I did.
And after that, I got to know them and found out that a lot of them feel guilty that they came back alive so, 'cause so many other guys ended up dying, so, um, the first thing to recognize, as I said, is that, uh, nobody ends up feeling clean after an experience like this.
And that, uh, one of the first steps is to recognize the need for forgiveness, not only of each other, but of ourselves. And that doesn't mean that we have to agree with each other all the time, but it means to get beyond the kind of rigidity and the polarization and the blaming and the sense of, um, you know, having to justify what we did or didn't do, which is the basis of so much of the problem of, of the last fifteen years.
And an important element of this, of course, is the willing to ackno willingness to acknowledge what were our mistakes, and I think with the openness to that, with beginning to listen to one another in the sense that's beginning to be made by a lot of people about the war oh, I don't like any of this; this is too hairy. (Sigh)