As the final act in this year’s One Book One Community initiative that the Danbury Library, Western Connecticut State University, and Danbury public schools, Author Tim O’Brien read from his 20th anniversary edition of The Things They Carried and discussed the similarities and differences between today’s wars and that of the Vietnam War.
After discussing the power of books and how they can be shared by a community of readers, O’Brien talked about what he thought courage meant before he entered the infantry as a draftee and what he now believes it to be.
O’Brien said that when he went to Vietnam, he thought courage was a physical thing.
“Charging a bunker, putting your life on the line,” he said. “I learned that moral courage is harder than physical courage. To be able to stand up for what you think is right, go to Canada, deal with the embarrassment of the community or your family. Courage became more than physical. It became moral and physical.”
To check out what he had to say when comparing the Vietnam War to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, please check out the full article in the Danbury News-Times.