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June 22, 2014 / Ryan Edward Roberts

Make art not…what?

I am no warmonger, I think going into Iraq in 2003 was a huge mistake in terms of the costs versus benefits, albeit in hindsight. Same with other conflicts we have gotten ourselves into (Somalia, Vietnam…). I do believe, however, that each of these were carried out with good intentions and for very compelling reasons. And I know that this post will probably irk some people.

I’m sitting in a parking lot looking at a bumper sticker that says “make art not war”. Let me add here that I am an artist of sorts, being a musician. If this were WWII Germany, or Russia, or N Korea, I would agree. This bumper sticker would be an appropriate counter statement there. But…(and here is the part that so many would love to rip out my throat and murder me over) this is the USA, where EVERY time we have ever acted militarily against another nation it was to save lives, or at the very least, save our own freedom. Every time.


SO, I believe that this bumper sticker means that the person who stuck it on their car is at the very least ignorant. How sickeningly petty it is to say that painting a picture or writing a book is more important than saving a life, or actually MILLIONS of lives! This is no “which came first” question: when it comes to the USA, our wars have made your art possible.


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