We must DEBUNK “the Myth of Redemptive Violence.”

U.S. culture has long perpetuated what has been called “The Myth of Redemptive Violence.”

Look at the plots of movies about the Wild West, about cops & robbers, about spies, etc. Nearly every movie ends with a big shoot-out in which “the good guys” use violence to defeat “the bad guys.”

The U.S. assumes that our military is “the good guys” and we can use violence to defeat “the bad guys” just like in the movies. The problem is that reality does not work that way.

The U.S. LOST the wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Violence is also PROFOUNDLY IMMORAL.

For more than 22 years I worked for a Washington State government agency that interacted with all other state agencies. Sometimes we had disagreements. But I NEVER heard anyone suggest that we should get some guns and go to the other agency and start shooting its people.

At the local level, decent people try to reduce domestic violence rather than urge family members to arm themselves and shoot it out at home.


We must DEBUNK “the Myth of Redemptive Violence.”  We must change many of our systems (foreign policy, policing, prisons, etc.) from violence to nonviolent alternatives that will be more humane and effective!

About GlenAnderson 1513 Articles
Since the late 1960s Glen Anderson has devoted his life to working as a volunteer for peace, nonviolence, social justice, and progressive political issues. He has worked through many existing organizations and started several. Over the years he has worked especially for such wide-ranging goals as making peace with Vietnam, eliminating nuclear weapons, converting from a military economy to a peacetime economy, abolishing the death penalty, promoting nonviolence at all levels throughout society, and helping people organize and strategize for grassroots movements to solve many kinds of problems. He writes, speaks, and conducts training workshops on a wide variety of topics. Since 1987 he has produced and hosted a one-hour cable TV interview program on many kinds of issues. Since 2017 he has blogged at https://parallaxperspectives.org He lives in Lacey near Olympia WA. You can reach him at (360) 491-9093 glen@parallaxperspectives.org