Jared Earles Posted over 4 years ago Should TED allow demonstrations of military equipment and uniform on the TED stage? Mr. Strobl, You have made the same vehement argument in several places in this conversation, and I will address it here, where it is trumped by the superior analysis above. First let me state my position as a pacifist and as one who has protested both the Iraq and Afghanistan (there weren't many of us) wars in their infancy, and who finds war and the US military-industrial complex and cultural war marchine pugnant. Surely there aren't too many TEDsters who like war, but that does not give preeminence to your point of view. "Military ideas are not worth spreading" fails on so many levels: - ignores the reality that the entire history of mankind has been marked and profoundly influenced by military conflict. - idly asserts that simply not thinking about or not discussing military ideas will somehow radically end conflict. - arbitrarily censors particular ideas from public discourse. - insults the intellect of other viewers, assuming their inability to filter concepts. - assumes the universal correctness of your normative framework (with which I happen to agree, but do not share your bent toward indoctrination of an already liberal-minded community). - in this case, ignores the content and context of the message itself. Health care benefits for veterans is a significant share of health care costs in the US, so military technology that reduces these costs is an "idea worth spreading" insomuch as "saving taxpayers money that can be better spent" is an idea worth spreading. What's next from you, Mr. Strobl? Shall we pull "The Art of War" off bookshelves because of its non-pacifist rhetoric? Perhaps we should strip George Washington, Teddy Roosevelt (founder of the US National Parks Service), and John F. Kennedy of their respected places in American history because they were soldiers, and military ideas are not worth spreading. The shoe is certainly on the other foot when an American is advising a Swede to show more tolerance.