Here is a short story imagining a possible, future war. At first glance, you might think the scenario is so outrageous that it would be an impossibility. But when you look at what has already occurred, you’ll realize that this brief tale isn’t outrageous at all.
And if it still offends you, just remember, it’s only a story.
“One last thing. How many of you have seen Unconscionable?” Second Lieutenant Garcia asked. “Just a spot-on movie of how homophobic and transphobic the enemy nation is in real life. So if after all General Rodriguez said, and if after all I’ve said now, you still aren’t fired up—if you still need motivation to fight this war—then you’d better examine your own sense of decency! We must fight and win! That’s it, soldiers. That’s all I have to say. Platoon! Atten-shun!”
The 40-some soldiers snapped to attention and Lieutenant Garcia ordered them to fall out and move to the line of departure. Staff Sergeant Smith was first squad’s squad leader, and Sergeant Jones was one of his team leaders. They walked in front of their troops.
“So we’re really doing this? We’re really going to war with a country because they won’t submit to America’s demands to decriminalize the love that constantly speaks its name?” Sergeant Jones mumbled.
“That and because it refuses to change sexes on birth certificates—because it’s guilty of pronoun discrimination and because it won’t give into all the rest of America’s demands . . . for its adults and for its children,” Sergeant Smith replied. “Did you hear what our wondrous leaders are saying about it all now? They say that by refusing to submit to America’s ultimatums, the ‘enemy nation’ is committing ‘crimes against humanity,’ and that the U.S. ‘has a moral duty to do whatever is necessary to stop it.’”
Jones shifted his grip on his M4. “This ‘enemy nation’ says it won’t submit because it goes against their Christian values.”
“Yep,” Smith agreed.
“—the mighty America is waging war on Christianity on behalf of the tolerance and love-is-love crowd,” Smith finished for him.
Jones shook his head. “I never imagined anything like this would happen. And, man, our chain of command is so enthusiastic about it—I definitely never expected to see that in the military.”
“And no one is going to stop it—not in the civilian world either. It’s got bipartisan support from the Democrats and Republicans—from the commies and conservatives.” Smith adjusted the combat load of six magazines secured in the pouches on the front of his body armor. “What do you think about that?”
“It’s like we’re living in an alternate reality,” Jones told him. “I’m actually questioning whether I can go through with this. Man, I never thought I’d hear myself say that.”
“You thinking about becoming a consciousness objector?” Smith asked.
“I guess not. I suppose it’s legal, but they don’t care about any of that anymore. They’d probably throw me in prison and charge me with sedition or something.”
“I was thinking the same thing about how all our leaders used to tell us to reject orders—even from the president—if they were ‘immoral’ or ‘illegal,’” agreed Smith. “That’s not going to fly now that all those former resisters are in charge and giving orders. They’d probably deem us ‘right-wing domestic terrorists.’”
“But that means we’re going to march into a country and kill people because they won’t violate their faith.” Jones kicked a stone. “I’m all for diversity but I just don’t know how I can do that.”
“So what’re we going to do?” Smith asked.
Jones looked at him. “You’re the squad leader. You tell me.”
Smith smiled. “Maybe this will all turn out like America’s wars in Afghanistan and Iraq did. You know, in a slightly different way. I mean, in Afghanistan and Iraq, we instituted officially Islamic theocracies. Maybe this time, we’ll create an officially Christian theocracy.”
Jones stared at him. “You really think that’s going to happen?”
Smith grimaced. “Nah.”
“So, again, what should we do?” Jones asked.
“I don’t know,” Smith admitted. “Right now, I guess we’re going to go wage war on Christians.”
Top Image: Artwork created by Paul Hair, © 2021.