It’s too bad that both pro-war and anti-war sides can’t at least agree to be pro-free speech.
Though she’s probably sincerely against our upcoming war, the lead Dixie Chick was pretty obviously also pandering to the anti-American mood of the European audience. I doubt she would have expressed the same sentiment at a concert in Texas, because I’m sure she’s smart enough to realize it wouldn’t go over too well. I don’t see what the free speech issue is, though. When a performer makes a conscious, calculated decsion to become a political firebrand, she obviously risks alienating some (or, in this case, most) of her audience. Private citizens are not constitutionally required to continue purchasing products from people who piss them off. Her prompt public apology indicates she doesn’t even have the courage of her convictions.
He thinks Ashcroft is an idiot: I agree.
He thinks the Admin. has mis-handled the Iraq crisis: Agreed.
He thinks the I.N.S. is a beauraucratic mess that needs to be replaced: Agreed.
He thinks Cheney and those in his circle would like nothing better than to keep everything a secret and he despises that: Agreed.
I guess it comes down to me saying, “You know he’s right.” far more often than I say, “Man he is nuts.” Someone who claims to be in the middle as he does, is going to have shots fired at him from both sides. He leans right, but that does not mean he cannot have some good ideas for the country as a whole now and again.
A fudged apology after his “enemies of the state” pronouncement.
Note, Jason Becker, that he does not say we should separate the soldiers from the politicians. He says:
And it is our duty as loyal Americans to shut up once the fighting begins, unless – unless facts prove the operation wrong, as was the case in Vietnam. […] So I said that a loyal American should hold on to sincere opinions but should exercise responsibility in expressing them if it hurts the morale of our troops or gives aid and comfort to the enemy. […]
And the same holds true for anti-war demonstrators. They should not be punished for any legal display, even in a time of war. But I have a right to consider them bad Americans. And I will.
He does not say we shouldn’t criticize the troops. He says we shouldn’t criticize the war itself because it will hurt the feeling of our troops and make Iraq feel better. (While thousands of bombs are being dropped on them in the first 72 hours, as is the current plan? I’m sure they’ll be taking a lot of comfort from our protests when the MOABs are tearing whats left of their country to shit).
Apparently when he got too many complaints regarding his Stalinist “enemies of the state” jargon, he decided to tone it down to “bad americans.” I’m sure he will continue to make good on his promise to “spotlight” these bad Americans. He’ll leave the punishment up to his audience.
What I find really stupid about this “lowering troop morale” argument, by the way, is that the troops, and Hussein, would have to be stoned out of their heads not to know that the country is divided over this war. It’s not exactly a secret, nor should it be. This theory apparently holds that it’s best to lie to the troops about this, as they are very sensitive people who can’t handle the truth. Apparently they can handle artillery shells landing next to them and watching the head of the guy sitting next to them blowing up like an overripe grape, but they can’t handle hearing that some people back home don’t agree with the president.
This concept is total anathema to a representative form of government wherein communication is the only way we have to let our representatives know how we think they should act. “HUSH! Pretend you like the war otherwise the troops will find out that some people don’t like it, and the need of our troops to be lied to in order to function at peak efficiency must at all costs take precedence over the basic American freedoms they’re fighting and dying for.” Uh-huh.
One of my affiliates wrote this, and he is currently in the army. (if you’re reading this I forgot your rank, sorry) So apparently there are plenty of people protesting the war by way of the soldiers and recruiters.
And yes, I would consider those people to be ‘bad Americans’ because A) they don’t stay informed about the things they supposedly care about B) they are too ignorant to know where the best place to deliver their message is and C) they’re too stupid to care if what they’re doing is right or not. Obviously who and where they were protesting was wrong by logistic standards.
I’m completely sure that some soldiers are hurt by the scorn they get from crowds of people, would you want groups to stand outside your office and scream at you every time you went to work because those people disagree with what your bosses twelve states over are doing?
I suggest you read the article that I linked to, it’s short but good.
“Why stage some elaborate hootinanny at a recruiting office? Especially on Broad street? No one in that office makes any policy decisions. I worked at the Pentagon for four years and there would be protesters out in front at least once a week. I had to think to myself “Why are they bitching at me?”. I don’t make the decisions! Complain to your elected officials!”
Um, there’s this little thing called getting media attention…
Anyway, that wasn’t what I was talking about. You know how back in Vietnam people called soldiers baby-killers? The “support the troops, not the President” thing is supposed to deal with that.
Don’t forget the report last week or so that cited some teachers verbally abusing the children of servicemembers because of the coming war. Fuckin’ hell. I know it’s an isolated incident, but you’d think that someone who has trained to be a teacher has to know that children aren’t responsible for who their parents are, and that if they have really got a beef, they should take it up with their elected officials and not some poor kid who is worried sick that their father or mother is in a soon-to-be-hot combat zone.
I think conservatives need to take some of the criticsm to heart and maybe approach this problem with a little more common sense, because we shouldn’t be in the position of pissing off the rest of the world to take down a loathsome dictator like Saddam.
And liberals need to fucking get over the fact that Bush won. Forget Florida ever happened. Their own boy couldn’t even win his home state, which is pathetic for a major presidential candidate. Hell, in 1984 Mondale lost 49 states, but at least he still got Minnesota to save some face. All Gore had to do was win Tennessee, but he flunked that.
The amount of vitriol on both sides is jarring. I voted for Gore, but I got upset today with some liberals calling it the “Bush Crime Family.”
One final note: the last thing the Democrats can afford right now is painted as a Vietnam-style anti-war party. Not unless they want to see another 20 years of Republican administrations. The political strategists and party leaders know this, ala the passage about halfway down in the following story.
And in addition they probably don’t want people enlisting in the military. Did the dude think of that? Someone protesting at a recruiting station is not protesting against existing troops (otherwise they’d pick a base full of already enlisted people) as much as they are attempting to convince those about to join up that it might not be the best idea. Same principle as anti-abortion-rights folks protesting outside a clinic that provides abortion. Trying to stop someone from making a choice they find politically disagreeable. Personally, I don’t agree with either group. We of course need a military. But this guy at the recruiting office apprently just doesn’t get the point of the protest if he thinks they’re trying to convince him, rather than the people he’s trying to recruit.
But that doesn’t explain the protests at the Pentagon.
Edit: Nor the statement from one of the protestors.
Edit again: Nor does it explain the style of protest they used. How is imitating a dead Iraqi supposed to scare potential recruits away? If anything it would help ‘Hey! It’s easy to kill Iraqis!’
And a couple hundred thousand fewer people voted for Bush than voted for the pathetic guy who couldn’t even win his home state. I guess that would make him more pathetic. Particularly since his only excuse for taking the position was clinging to legal technicalities to squeak in. (“The deadline for turning in the votes to Congress is coming up in a few months – let’s run out the clock so my Florida campaign director, who happens to be the Secretary of State, can declare the election over without a recount!”)
Any dude who would demand to lead the country even though a quarter of a million more people voted for the other guy is a basically a selfish creep with no respect for the American people.
What needs explaining about that? People who work desk jobs at the Pentagon aren’t on the front line of a war. They aren’t away from home getting shot at. Sure, someone flew a plane into the Pentagon, but they also did the same thing to a pair of office buildings in New York City. Am I supposed to shut up about my objections to the war in order to protect the morale of people working in New York City office buildings?
What needs explaining about that? People who work desk jobs at the Pentagon aren’t on the front line of a war. They aren’t away from home getting shot at. Sure, someone flew a plane into the Pentagon, but they also did the same thing to a pair of office buildings in New York City. Am I supposed to shut up about my objections to the war in order to protect the morale of people working in New York City office buildings?[/quote]
Well you certainly threw my comment about shutting up right back into my face! You got me there!
You do realize that no part of your post made any sense right?
What do you call a guy who concedes the highest-profile election campaign in the world and then calls up his opponent later and says, “Nevermind”?
With all respect due to a person named Jesus, this is the most ignorant statement I’ve ever heard on the subject of the 2000 Presidential Election. Dust off your notebooks from seventh grade social studies and learn about how our system works.