COMMENT: Peace protesters dishonouring our soldiers

FOR the past few weeks, I've reluctantly put online stories about a group of people trespassing and disrupting a military training exercise near Rockhampton.

I say reluctantly because I do not agree with what they are doing.

I'm all for Freedom of Speech and people protesting about matters that are important to them, but the reasoning behind this group's protests baffles me.

What do you think about Peace Convergence protesters reasons for protesting Talisman Sabre?

This poll ended on 17 July 2015.

Current Results

Agree fully

15%

Agree partly

3%

Disagree totally

81%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Let me tell you why.

I was introduced to honouring our soldiers when I was little.

I studied Journalism at James Cook University the year Australia started peace-keeping in East Timor. A group of soldiers I was mates with were among the first deployed to East Timor, along with one of university tutors.

I started my journalism careers in Townsville, building a 'Covering the Bases' monthly special feature from two pages to eight (at times).

I've interviewed probably 40-50 veterans over the course of my 11 year career about what they went through fighting and peace-keeping overseas. These men and women put their hand up to protect what they believe is a better way of life than what people in other countries experience.

By protesting against military training exercises, these 'peace' protesters are dishonouring the brave sacrifices of all our defence force personnel - past, present and future.

And it boils my blood that these people think the world can exist without war or without peace-keepers.

One of the key roles of the military is peace-keeping. If they were not around to keep the peace, there would be more violence, more horrible deaths, and more people suffering at the hands of others.

"I am a Christian and believe in love thy neighbour and trying to commit no harm to one another," Peace Convergence protester Simon Reeves said.

What do you think of protesters trespassing during Talisman Sabre?

This poll ended on 17 July 2015.

Current Results

It's the only way to get the message across

14%

They should keep their protesting efforts outside of Shoalwater Bay land

32%

They shouldn't be protesting at all

53%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Many groups promote non-violent behaviour to our fellow man and I do not like seeing humans harming each other, or animals for that matter, as much as the next person.

But, unfortunately, it is how the world exists. Even in the animal kingdom.

Psychologists have been arguing for and against Utopian societies, which include no violence (B.F. Skinner 1948), for decades.

Even Buddhism promotes their followers to achieve enlightenment through compassion for others.

However, a Utopian society cannot be achieved.

Buddhism promotes followers need to overcome their sufferings (poverty, greed, desire, craving) and then go on to help others overcome their sufferings.

If we were to live in a Utopian society as encouraged by Buddhism, who would there be left to help overcome their sufferings if we've already overcome our sufferings.

To put it simply, the world can only exist with positives and negatives, yin and yang, good and evil.

We cannot recognise how good something is without knowing how bad it could be.


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