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peace

a few thoughts i typed out on my phone at 3 AM, in the dark and quiet

John DeVore
9 min readOct 14, 2023

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as someone whose politics lean left, i have, at times in my life, prided myself on my ability to appreciate the nuances of complicated situations. yes, i have been an insufferable, teeth-sucking know-it-all who has preached, to anyone who could stand it, about moral relativism. in that worldview, which i have soaked in like it was a hot tub, there is no black or white, no us or them, only endless deserts of gray. I was younger then.

i do not hold many binaries sacred, and i do believe that right and wrong do depend on perspectives and circumstances and the twin suffocating pressures of culture and history. but as i sit here, rapidly hurtling through mid-life, feeling like i know less than i did when i thought i knew so much, i am surprised to discover a conviction that exists beyond any kind of context.

there is one binary that i cannot rationalize away and that is, simply: there is peace or there is war, and you cannot be for both at the same time. you can try? but i think being honest with oneself is liberating.

are there times when war is unavoidable? sure, yes, absolutely. but even in those instances, even while fighting a ruthless, sadistic enemy like the nazis, the innocent will die. murder is murder to the dead. those grandmothers and teenagers and bakers and dentists who burned in dresden and nagasaki and the jews who perished…

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John DeVore

I created Humungus, a blog about pop culture, politics, and feelings. Support the madness: https://johndevore.medium.com/subscribe