As a mother and a woman I inwardly recoil. Don't leave your babies, something within me cries, but to whom? Of course these mothers have no choice. They cannot desert their country. Yet if manly honor has always depended on a willingness to die for one's country, a woman's honor has consisted in living for her children. Where in the logic of war is there room for that reality, the deepest truth I know?
I do not know how to reconcile these two levels. A man is more manly because he does a soldier's work, but is a woman more womanly? Do I want a society in which other women admire mothers marching to war?
The battle resumes. There is work to be done. Get back in your box, warring unseemly emotions.
Bring them home, God, every son and daughter of America. Bring them home, victorious, and grant us peace.
Maggie Gallagher is a nationally syndicated columnist, a leading voice in the new marriage movement and co-author of The Case for Marriage: Why Married People Are Happier, Healthier, and Better Off Financially.
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