|Painting by Edmund Blair Leighton|
I was stunned and disturbed this morning to hear that the United States Pentagon has lifted the ban on women fighting in the military. As I listened to the commentator on the radio speak of women waiting at home for the men serving as something as "antiquated as the wearing of hoopskirts" in a disgusted tone, my stomach lurched.
And I began to think about the many reasons to have women home during times of war, "keeping those homefires burning."
Those Left BehindThe first thing that came to mind was the draft. If both the fathers AND the mothers of children are called up to arms, WHO takes care of the children?
Who DOES keep the homefires burning, keeps the money coming in, keeps the neighborhoods functioning, keeps the homes protected from theft and the children from harm?
A Bloodthirsty People
Have we, as a country, as a society, really come to the point where we are as bloodthirsty and warlike as the ancient Greeks and Romans before us? If we haven't already, we soon will be, if our women become as hardened and troubled as our soldiers both past and present. War is one of the most disturbing things that humankind deals with, and if our soldiering men are having such a dfficult time with post-traumatic syndrome and other such mental troubles, what will happen to nurturing, feminine women?
Is the female sex demanding, as did Lady Macbeth?
Come you spirits
That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here. . . .
Come to my woman's breasts
And take my milk for gall, you murdering ministers.
What WILL happen when mothers become "murdering ministers?"
My thoughts turn to the Jaredites, in the Book of Mormon. Near the end of their civilization, (which came about because of all the fighting and killing among them-- in essence, they destroyed themselves!) they had become so bloodthirsty and hardened that they required their women and their children to fight, in addition to all their men.
And it came to pass that when they were all gathered together, every one to the army which he would, with their wives and their children—both men, women and children being armed with weapons of war, having shields, and breastplates, and head-plates, and being clothed after the manner of war—they did march forth one against another to battle; and they fought all that day, and conquered not. (Ether 15:15)The destruction was so great among their people, that there was not even anyone left to bury their dead.
And so swift and speedy was the war that there was none left to bury the dead, but they did march forth from the shedding of blood to the shedding of blood, leaving the bodies of both men, women, and children strewed upon the face of the land, to become a prey to the worms of the flesh. (Ether 14:22)This future, with all the wars going on all around the world that OUR troops are fighting in, is not that far off. How quickly has the unthinkable always happened? When looking back to history and those who have come before, it's sooner than we like to think.
In all of this, the media is speaking from two polar opposite opinions. On the one hand, arming women to fight in bloody and disturbing wars is being applauded, while cries for taking away personal weapons of protection from families are reaching fever pitches.
There is a great deal of talk of "protecting children," but who protects the young when BOTH their parents are serving in distant lands, killing the innocent children of our enemies? The State???
How can a mother keep the milk of human kindness in her heart for her own little ones, knowing that her actions are destroying the lives of other babies?
Lady Macbeth, again, shows us that a woman cannot have both.
As stated in "The Family: A Proclamation to the World,"
andGender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.
By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.
Men and women ARE different, and yet equal.
To deny that fact is not only scientifically ridiculous, it is also silly in the emotional, mental, and spiritual senses. Misinterpreting equality in such a way is nonsensical.
Each have their own stewardships that work within their natural abilities and talents. BOTH ARE NEEDED-- in their heaven-endowed duties. They should then help and support one another in those roles, as equal partners.
The prophets then go on:
...we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets.
The modern world that women are trying to navigate is more confusing and troubling than ever. For me, this is not a day to rejoice. It is a day of mourning. My pleading prayers for peace will be stronger and more heartfelt than ever.
I raise my voice in protest-- I cannot stand by and let this disturbing issue stand, unchallenged.
May the Lord help our society come to its senses, before it's too late!!!