I didn’t realize that Chris Hedges, author of War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning has an MDiv from Harvard Divinity.
discovered in Chris Hedges – Bio
In an article written ABOUT Hedges in the National Catholic Reporter:
â€œI am not a pacifist,â€ he said in an interview from his home in New Jersey. â€œI wish I was but I am a reporter. I have to see the world as it is, not as I want it to be.â€
Though an unrelenting critic of war, he sees some as necessary, an ethical responsibility that he compares to taking poison, â€œjust as a person with cancer accepts chemotherapy to live,â€ he writes. â€œWe cannot succumb to despair. Force is, and I suspect always will be, part of the human condition. There are times when the force wielded by one immoral faction must be countered by a faction that, while never moral, is perhaps less immoral.â€
Yet even within that acceptance — and this apparent paradox raises some perplexity — his critique of war is so total that it is difficult to see how any might be legitimate. Though despairing that those who oppose war and who dare to puncture the war myths will ever win over those intent on making war, Hedges urges vigilance. â€œReinhold Niebuhr aptly reminded us that we must all act and then ask for forgiveness. This book is not a call for inaction. It is a call for repentance.â€
Of course, being an avid Hauerwas reader, I couldn’t help but imagine Stanley wincing at that one. “Act and THEN ask for repentance”, which is to capitulate to the “realist” notion advanced by Reinhold Niebuhr. It seems that Hedges’ “realism” is but aspiration; that he feels “obligated” as a journalist to be “realist” (where “objectivity” and “realism” are interdependent and preclude pacifism. I guess it depends on the location of that “realism”. Is it “realism” from the location of the church, where there is a hope not divorced from “reality” since this reality is anchored in a history which is God’s.