As I type away--snug in the comfort of my Cherry Hill NJ home--I'm troubled that with all this talk about baseball and Iran and gas prices Americans seem to be forgetting that our soldiers are dying with incresing frequency in Iraq. One project I am tending to this weekend is a little war protest that I hope others will become excited about, too. I am taking little plastic army men and writing the words "BRING ME HOME" on a little piece of masking tape then sticking it onto the little plastic soldier's base.
I have about a dozen plastic soldiers in my coat pocket at all times and place them about randomly wherever I go: one in the produce at the grocery, another on the shelves at the videostore, the restroom at the gas station or a restaurant, and so forth. This seems like a mild but mindful form of protest, but I have to admit I get a bit of a high from doing it. I hope that people will find these small toys with their message, and they'll get to thinking about the Iraq war. That's really the modest goal of this for me. (And of course the wildly subversive feeling that such behavior gives me is a bonus!)
I bought several 100-toy bags of army men at the dollarstore and my friends Andrea, Peter, Brian (as well as my boy Greg) have helped me out a great deal by taking a few dozen and spreading them 'round a bit. My mother was excited to help too. She took 50 because she says this war reminds her of vietman. We all know how that turned out.
The war in Iraq is costing American taxpayers 3 billion dollars a day.
For the families of the 2439 dead American soldiers--and for the 17,896 wounded Vets-- the sacrifice is infinitely more.
I should note that this is a totally unoriginal idea. I heard a story on NRP about a retired lady in Chicago who took to doing this because she wanted to do something to register her discontent. here is a link to her story.
(Image courtesy of Keith Hodan)