Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Vietnam, the Cold War and Raising My Daughter

I work with a Vietnam veteran. Though the war was thirty-five years ago he still talks about it and hints about his experience there. The war in Vietnam is for me ancient history. Except for my co-worker I’ve no memory of it. My images of it are more from movies and John McCain then from the reality of it. When that war ended I was the same age that my daughter is now. Still I feel no connection to it.

My daughters’ generation understands little of history. This is a scary precedent. This generation has no larger framework to work through. If the Vietnam war seems irrelevant to me then what about WWII and the Cold War.

I stood in the freezer at work talking with a co-worker. Our parents and grandparents escaped Nazi Germany to come to America. Those roots and the lessons passed on to us from our parents colour our world view. What am I passing along to my daughter? A world view that promotes affluence and living without sacrifice? That was not our parents world but that became the experience for my generation.

I write in remiss. In a couple years I will have few opportunities to teach my daughter. I sense failure in providing scaffolding for this framework. It is in the context of history that we see the danger of world views such as Socialism and Marxism. In that same milieu freedom of religion and freedom from taxes and tyranny are evident.

Prior to dinner in our house we learn about a country and pray for it. Many of these countries are mired in government philosophies different than ours. The people are slaves to false religions and hollow philosophies. I sense I should explore these thoughts with my progeny while there is time. And I will spend some personal time learning recent history. If we understand our past we will know what we are up against in our future.

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