VIEWSrnDon’t Feed the War Machinernby Bill Kauffmanrn^ *” T T is sympathies were for race—too lofty to descend tornX J.persons,” a wit once said of the aboHtionist SenatorrnSumner. For how else could a man countenance the slaughterrnof his countrymen, not only rebel Southerners but noblernRobert Gould Shaw and Berkshires boys, too?rnThe most dangerous people—the ones who will kill you forrnyour own good—are those who subordinate the individual tornabstractions; the class, the master race, the efficient economy.rnThey gain power because they are willing to perform the sleazyrnand degrading acts necessary to its achievement. You see themrnon television, their flickering lair: the Senator once arrested outsidernthe South African embassy, oozing righteousness, who dailyrnbrowbeat his staff with his crazed Richie Rich rantings; thernslovenly obese comedienne, self-styled champion of the workingrnclass, who mistreats elevator operators and hotel clerks; thernstriding purposeful men—from Bill Clinton to William Simonrn—who make a great show of their religious faith yet arernknown as squalling martinets who abuse underlings.rnInfluential men, their days a blur of movement, retainers atrnbeck and call, unable even to dial a car phone by themselves,rncome to see others as toadies or supplicants (with the toothsomernfew laid aside as bed partners). In their eyes we are all expendable.rnWhy was anyone surprised when Ted Kennedyrnswam away, leaving Mary ]o Kopechne to scream in her airrnBill Kauffman is the author of Every Man A King, CountryrnTowns of New York, and America First!rnpocket till the water rushed in? Kopechnes serve, andrnKennedys are served; Vietnam was just Chappaquiddick withrnrice paddies. Shut up and die.rnWho are these creatures, capable of decreeing—with nornmore compunction than an acned scamp in a Metallica T-shirtrndisplays whilst zapping foes in Mortal Kombat—the mass executionrnof, say, Iraqi children or uppity Salvadoran peasants?rnDorothy Day, founder of the Catholic Worker movement,rnwrote of Hiroshima and Nagasaki:rnMr. Truman was jubilant… True man. What a strangernname, come to think of i t . . . . Truman is a true man ofrnhis time in that he was jubilant. He was not a son ofrnGod, brother of Christ, brother of the Japanese, jubilatingrnas he did . . . jubilate deo. We have killed 318,000rnJapanese . . . they are vaporized, our Japanese brothers,rnscattered, men, women and babies, to the four winds,rnover the seven seas. Perhaps we will breathe their dustrninto our nostrils, feel them in the fog of New York on ourrnfaces, feel them in the rain on the hills of Easton.rnBut then Dorothy was what they called a sob sister. Ofrncourse she wasn’t: her acts of charity, her very life, were face tornface, local, and intensely “personalist,” as she sometimes describedrnher philosophy. (Other times it was “anarchist” or “distributist.”)rnBut she saw Christ in the face of a Bowery bum, andrnlike an impractical idealist she offered him bread instead of arn14/CHRONICLESrnrnrn