Evil Minds that Plot Destruction
Generals gathered in their masses
Just like witches at black masses
Evil minds that plot destruction
Sorcerers of death’s construction
In the fields the bodies burning
As the war machine keeps turning
Death and hatred to mankind
Poisoning their brainwashed minds
The Twenty-First Century was born in fire and baptized with the blood of innocents.
Ten years ago I stood in front of a television and watched a pair of magnificent buildings fall. As the picture of the events became clearer over the next several hours, as we learned for certain that it was an attack, that it was terrorism, a cold and creeping dread settled in my bones and a single song started playing in my mind, over and over again.
We would be going to war and we were not going to stop.
I knew it would be an awful, awful thing – that hundreds of thousands of innocent people were going to be buried over the event.
I was glad of it. From the depths of my grief and rage, I wanted paybacks. We all did.
I hated those men. I wanted raise them from the dead just to vaporize them again and again and again and again.
We all did.
And so we went to war. We woke up The Bloodthirster and let it out of its cage to go play in the desert. We were lied to and lied to ourselves in return. We lied to ourselves about our motives, about our foreign policy, about our core values as human beings.
I say “We” and I mean it. We, as a people, cannot foist the responsibility of these atrocities on anyone except ourselves. All the events that followed – the wars, the civilian deaths, the prisons, the tortures, the treacheries:
We allowed that to happen.
The Twenty-First Century is ten years old today and its formative years were composed of religious extremism, the erosion of civil liberties, political fear-mongering, and the dissolution of many of the things that our forefathers fought and died for.
We have taught our children to fear.
We’re no more or less safe than we were on September 10th, 2001.
I don’t want to live in fear.
I don’t know the way forward. We certainly can’t go back but I think we, as a people, need to take a long, hard look at how we got to this point. We are addicted to the rage and the fear.
Ozzy and Tony wrote the song as being topical to the Vietnam War. Their intent was to illustrate how the process of war never changes, how the result is always the same, and the blood left on a battlefield simply serves to slick the wheels for the next outing of the War Machine.
We can break this cycle. We have to. We have to stop thinking from a mindset of xenophobia and start thinking from one of welcoming and tolerance.
Because if we don’t, this entire cycle will begin again. And again. And again. And again.