Invariably, we have the name of Chris Kyle as being a hero. The movie, American Sniper, is smashing all kinds of records. People are lining up to see this movie. Many, including myself, have read both the book and have seen the movie. Many of us have been touched. Upon leaving the movie theatre after seeing it, there was an eerie silence. Perhaps, that is caused by the impression it made.
Thinking through that experience, I recall the father-son relationship that was touched on. Chris’s father told his son that it was important for the man to be the shepherd. A shepherd takes care of his sheep. It was the role of the man to take care of his family. That extension included watching his Marines. While I hardly consider Marines as sheep, I noted that illusion and had some quiet laughter.
I also thought about how many of us need heroes in their lives. I thought about who my hero was. Usually, for the son, that hero is the father. That was not the case with me. He was physically there but not emotionally. I wonder how many sons grow without their fathers in their lives. I wonder how close Chris Kyle was with his father. I also wonder if President Obama had much of a relationship with his father. I thought about whether that made him any less of a leader. Does military service generate all of the rightful leaders? Perhaps not.
But, boys need some measured violence. There is an innate need for aggression. It is the father’s role to help sort that out. If the father is not present, then, there must be some kind of surrogate. It is important that the growing male be allowed to express feelings of anger and to find appropriate ways to get it out. Certainly, I am not saying that this need to be expressed by enlisting in the military service. There is something very simple and direct about the military. We should be proud of that simplicity of God, Family, and Country.
God, Family, and Country bring out the heroes. We so desperately need them. Do you think that is the reason why a record amount of tickets for American Sniper were sold?