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Updated: 2/20/2020
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  • "Everyone assumed I'd had some soul-scarring encounter with the Real: the harsh, unvarnished violent world-as-it-actually-is, outside the bubble America, a sojourn to the Heart of Darkness that either destroys you or leaves you sadder or wiser. It's bullshit, of course"(170) .
  • "How many Vietnam vets does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
  • "The weird thing with being a veteran, at least for me, is that you do feel better than most people...You held up your hand and said, 'I'm willing to die for these worthless civilians'"(203).
  • He is so annoying
  • I know, right?
  • "I snorted, took a pause, and, as I looked at her flat-heeled shoes, felt that old vet-versus-civilian anger coming up"(173).
  • They're not my people
  • We're all one people
  • How could you kill your own people?
  • "'I didn't shoot anybody, but I was definitely responsible'"(200).
  • I never killed anyone. But I did watch somebody die. Slowly
  • "'My father's a deacon,' she said. 'But he's not a very good man. Ittook me a long time to realize that...'"(198).
  • My father thinks Islam is the religion of poor blacks. He says people will think I picked it up in prison.
  • "But Zara's outburst didn't come. She just stood there. And then some emotion I couldn't identify moved through her, and she didn't seem angry anymore"(212). Respect can be forged even between people with opposing belief systems through debate and conversation.
  • It's okay. I'm glad you can talk about it. Maybe we'll talk another time
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