The new film by Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge, tells the story of WWII American Army Medic Desmond T. Doss, who served during the Battle of Okinawa, and refused to kill people. He became the first man in American history to receive the Medal of Honor without firing a shot.
The papers have varied reviews of the film. The Daily Telegraph reports that Doss, who’s played Andrew Garfield, was a committed Seventh Day Adventist and pacifist who served as a medic at the hellish battle for Okinawa towards the end of the Second World War. He saved 75 lives on the field of battle without ever lifting a weapon, and remains only one of three conscientious objectors to have been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. Their review of the film ‘bruising, fantastically moving comeback’ for Mel Gibson. The Guardian says the film has a sledgehammer lack of subtlety whereas Variety describes the film as “brutally effective”.
Seventh Day Adventists are a Protestant (therefore Christian) denomination with about 14 million Seventh Day Adventists worldwide. Adventists live modest lives, with a strict code of ethics. They don’t smoke or drink alcohol, and recommend a vegetarian diet. Meat is permitted, but only following the Biblical commandments on clean and unclean food. Missionary work is very important to the Church and all Adventists believe they have a duty to share their beliefs with others. There is a Seventh Day Adventist in South London’s Balham.
In 2015 the President candidate for the Republican party Ben Carson had to explain his membership of the Seventh Day Adventist Church because other presidential hopefuls like Donald Trump were criticising him.