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Why I Am a Pacifist at

Until very recently, if you had asked me to describe my spiritual and intellectual leanings on the matter of warfare, I would not have described myself as a pacifist. In fact, I have distanced myself from pacifism in conversations with various friends and intellectual sparing partners, choosing instead to be counted among the students of the Christian just-war tradition; to my mind this provided a tidy loophole that allowed me to be in favor of violence that prevents greater violence, establishes justice, or wins a greater, longer-lasting peace.

I’ve changed my mind. Now I am a pacifist.

I made the decision to call myself a pacifist at about nine o’clock in the evening on February 9, 2009. I was reading an essay by Wendell Berry and came across these words:



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