Oregon Airshow

We coughed up the $20 a piece yesterday and went to the Oregon Airshow. Wow. I had never been to an airshow before so the chance to go and see the Blue Angels (annoying audio on their site) was quite the treat.

I have watched plenty of their stuff on TV, so it wasn't that I was unfamiliar with what they do... but seeing it live really was incredible. There was an element of playfulness that I really hadn't expected -- as they transition between maneuvers you see them circling around, one or two planes racing to catch up with the others -- it looked like a giant game of plane tag at times.

The crummy cell phone pictures make it look as though they were miles away but in person they really feel as though you could just reach out and touch them when they fly overhead. The first time one banked over the crowd literally got my heart pumping (and my ears ringing) -- the F/A-18 is quite the flying machine.

There's a feeling I'm starting to get used to, though, as my relatively new views on peace slowly infiltrate the corners of my life, and I experienced it while watching both the Angels and (more so) the A-10 Warthog they had there: Very, very cool to watch the pilots perform? Yep. Totally amazing to see such capable aircraft pushed to its limits? Absolutely. But the maneuvers we saw yesterday aren't the purpose of those birds. Plain and simple, they were designed and constructed to kill. And that's just not ok. And I don't yet know how to reconcile the enjoyment and the repulsion I experience at the same sight.


Allen said...

So you and Driscoll are parting ways then (in regards to thoughts of war/pacifism)?


Neal n Julie said...

I've always appreciated the fantastic performances of the Angels. Top notch aviators, and no g-suits in their shows.

I am glad they are there to defend me if and when I cannot.

Jed said...

@ Hutch: I don't really remember Driscoll's point of view... haven't been listening to his sermons lately, I ought to start again.

@ Neal: yeah dude, and it's not like they hold back on the g-forces. I can't even imagine what it feels like in there.

Being defended is a wonderful feeling. But being defended (a good end) by destruction of life and damning of souls (a not-good means) is just not acceptable to me.

Fogey said...

I see the reason for the presence of the F/A-18 as two fold...

Currently, the ends is for preventing the destruction of what our country deems of value. The means being the destruction of stuff someone would use to do that. Guns, trucks, factories - and a person's very own brain and influence. As far as damning souls - I wouldn't find that acceptable either. I don't think anyone's built a machine that can do that though.

Originally, the ends was for causing the USSR to bankrupt itself in an arms race. The means being the building of as many of these things as possible so it would scare the crap out of anyone with a finger that was even close to the button that could end the world, so they wouldn't get nervous or stupid.

It is a much better world that we live in than our parents did. Thank God for Reagan.