A Conversation for Robert A. Heinlein
DA ; Simply Vicky: Don't get pithy with me! Posted Apr 10, 2002
Two Bit Trigger Pumping Moron Posted Apr 10, 2002
So you would have someone defend you but you would still call them murderers and sinners. You ask too much.
I'm glad I don't have to defend you. I might save your life, and then you would condemn me for it. What would be the point?
Lentilla (Keeper of Non-Sequiturs) Posted Apr 10, 2002
Della, this question isn't to put you on the spot - just curious. If somebody threatened the life of your boys, would you kill if it became necessary?
DA ; Simply Vicky: Don't get pithy with me! Posted Dec 5, 2002
Good question,Lentilla! I have had to think about it a lot... Now the youngest is 15 y.o., I am more hesitant than I would have been when he was 5. He's taller and bigger than I am, and it depends on circumstances - he might well be having to defend *me*! I suppose the answer is - if necessary, but I would still be aware of having done wrong in killing someone! Jimmy just asked me if I would kill someone to defend *my* life - that's easy - no.
Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein
Joel Posted Feb 5, 2006
In Heinlein’s “Expanded Universe”, in the afterword to “Who are the Heirs of Patrick Henry”, he refers to criticism of Starship Troopers and states explicitly:
“Veteran” does not mean in English dictionaries or in this novel solely a person who has served in the military forces. I concede that in commonest usage it means a war veteran… but no one hesitates to speak of a veteran fireman or veteran school teacher. In STARSHIP TROOPERS it is stated flatly and more than once that nineteen out of twenty veterans are *not* military veterans. Instead, 95% of voters are what we call today “former members of federal civil service.”
Addendum: The volunteer is not given a choice. He/she can’t win a franchise by volunteering for what we call civil service. He volunteers… then for two years plus-or-minus he goes where he is sent and does what he is told to do. If he is young, male, and healthy, he may wind up as cannon fodder. But there are long chances against it.
Some of the other points in his essay have been made by others on this thread, but this main detail has gone overlooked. Heinlein anticipated you.
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