Well, it’s that time of year again, and I’d like to write you a letter telling you that I’ve been a good boy and deserve all kinds of groovy things – like a 32 gigabyte iPhone 4 or a Bose Acoustic Wave Sound System.  But Yuletide protocol dictates that, since I’m technically an adult, I should confine my requests to more altruistic endeavors, such as Peace on Earth.  
Of course, Peace on Earth is a very laudable goal and I’m sure that people have been asking for it ever since God was a boy.  Yet for reasons I can only speculate, there are dozens if not hundreds of armed conflicts throughout the world, and all we get from you are Barbie Dolls, Nintendo and 30-year-old TV specials starring Burl Ives
In thinking about the practicalities of this request, I realized that there may be too many obstacles for even you, Santa Claus, to bring peace about. First of all, I’m not sure how we would deal with the culture shock. I mean, what’s going to happen to all the people that depend on war for their livelihood? Lockheed and McDonnell Douglass would have to lay off thousands of employees and have a yard sale just to keep their heads above water.  The 82nd Airborne would have to be downsized and restricted to kite flying tournaments, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff would be standing by the side of the road holding up signs that say “Will Outline Battle Strategy for Food ...”  
One of the finest warriors our country ever produced, General George C. Patton, said, “Americans traditionally love a fight ...” Of course, he was rallying the troops for D-Day when he made that statement. But he had a point.  And as long as there are TV shows like Breaking Bad, CSI and old reruns of the Untouchables, I don’t think we’re going to get psyched for Peace on Earth anytime soon.  
You know, it’s not that we really LIKE war so much; it’s just that we’re terrified of peace!  We’d have no idea how to act!  World Peace is uncharted territory! It’s like a vast unknown frontier!  We have become so accustomed to war, hostility and violence, that to even think of changing our behavior is about as nerve-wracking and stressful as going through a divorce after 5,000 years of marriage!
So instead of just arbitrarily asking you for World Peace I’d like to ask for some kind of global mechanism that would help us all to face this demon. Right now, one of the things that scares people the most is the idea that World Peace means not being able to do anything with aggression, except maybe to beat up some pillows or take the World Wrestling Entertainment seriously.
I certainly don’t expect you to come up with anything right away, but I would be happy to meet with you up there in the Fortress of Solitude to help you brainstorm over this matter. Maybe we can put something together for next Christmas. So, have your people call my people and we’ll do lunch. By the way, my parents have been trying to convince me since I was 12 that you don’t exist and I’d like to give them some hard evidence to the contrary. 

Paul McDonald is a writer, educator and graduate student who thinks too much. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.