KOK Edit: Your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM)
KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) Katharine O'Moore Klopf

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

My Son, the Pacifist

This week my seventh-grader had me write this letter to his homeroom teacher:
Dear Ms. D,

Neil tells me that one of the assignments coming up in class involves writing a letter to a U.S. soldier stationed in Iraq. Neil is a pacifist and strongly believes that writing letters to soldiers would imply that he supports the war in Iraq, which he does not. I am writing you to say that I support Neil’s beliefs and that I respectfully request that he be allowed to complete a different assignment in lieu of this one.
I'm so proud of him.


Peter K Fallon, Ph.D. said...


Tell Neil that there's this old guy in Chicago who teaches journalism in a university who read about him on your blog and wants him to know that he, too, is very proud of him.


Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

I'll do that, Peter. Thank you.

By now, my family members recognize you whenever you post on my blog: "Oh, it's that journalism professor with the beard!" ;-)

Anonymous said...

Katharine -

Do you really think writing a letter to a soldier supports the war? Or the soldier? I think the latter, which is a completely different cause.

In any event, good for your son for sticking to what he believes in - and at such a young age.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

Alicia, thanks for asking your question respectfully.

The problem for Neil (and for me and for my husband) is that soldiers are trained to kill, among other things. We believe that human life is sacred, so we do not condone its taking, whether in the Iraq war or in any other war.

We will not be rude or confrontational to any member of the military, but we won't write to thank them. We believe that saying to soldiers "Thank you for serving our country" is code language for "Thank you for killing other human beings."

Anonymous said...

And thank you for explaining respectfully :)

Template created by Makeworthy Media