A New Look at War
Posted by Melanie in Heroes, History, Manly Virtues

“Can I talk to you privately?”

It wasn’t an unusual request, so I stepped aside with her. “I need to ask you about my son. I think he may be…I’m afraid he might be…showing some tendencies toward being…Oh, I think something’s wrong with him! Maybe he’s a psychopath or something!”

My eyebrows went up. “What would make you think that?” I replied, wondering if she was going to tell me he was torturing small animals or being a firebug.

“Well, he plays war all the time! And that means he’s pretending to kill people! And sometimes he pretends like he’s been shot and he pretends to die! That’s not normal is it?”

I relaxed. “Let me explain something to you. You are a girl, a mother. When you think of war, you think of orphans and widows, POWs and disabled veterans. You imagine your son coming home bloodied and beaten. It’s scary and brutal, right?”

“Yes, of course! Doesn’t everyone think that way?”

“No! When your son thinks of war, he is thinking of valiant deeds, courage, and bravery. He’s imagining standing up to the evil to protect the weak and innocent. When he pretends to be shot, he’s picturing nobly laying down his life for his brothers in arms. To him, it’s all about testing his strength and showing himself mighty when it counts, it’s about manliness and honor.”

Hope dawned in her eyes. “Really? I never thought about it that way! Is that really why he’s obsessed with war and battle?”

“Yes, certainly. Of course, the explosions don’t hurt the attraction any,” I smiled at her.

Yesterday, on the 67th anniversary of the start of the Battle of the Bulge, Life Magazine released some never before seen shots of the Ardennes during the Battle. They are really quite remarkable, some even in full color. Gather your children around and take a look at them. Take time to tell them about the great, glorious fight against one of the most evil leaders the world has seen — and don’t be worried when they are fascinated with war!


For manly, historical and inspiring gifts for boys fascinated with war, from King Arthur swords to rubberband machine guns, click here!

For inspiring stories of the heroes of American History that teach virtue and character, get our Hero Tales from American History dramatized audiobooks by Theodore Roosevelt and Henry Cabot Lodge. Order by midnight, Monday, December 20th for Christmas delivery.