Tuesday, October 17, 2006

War protesters

In listening to the news lately I am struck by the number of people who are "extremely concerned" about the situation in Iraq and who are expressing their dissatisfaction with the current administration and Congress because "THEY" got us into this quagmire.

As one who was agsinst this war FROM THE BEGINNING, I feel compelled to point out a few things and ask a few questions:

Congress was operating on the overwhleming opinion of the public in sanctioning President Bush's actions in Iraq. Members of Congress walk a thin line every day -- balancing the wishes of their constituents with their own values. When I interned in Senator Dorgan's office he had some interesting things to say about how, as a member of Congress, he sometimes has to make hard choices and go with his gut vs. going with popular opinion. No one is right 100% of the time about anything.

My point? If you were one of the jerks who was screaming for war from the second the planes hit the towers and you were among those clamoring for us to "bomb them back to the stone age" or those who were too damn stupid and uninformed to realize that there was NEVER a connection between Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, you have no business being pissed off at Congress for the situation we're in now. Many of those members voted the way they did because the country was in a frenzy. Does that mean their votes were right, or that they voted their conscience? Some probably voted for the war believing it was the right thing to do. Others probably voted for the war because their consituents were in favor if it. But you are not allowed to change your position on the war over 3 years later when you decide it isn't going well so maybe it wasn't the smartest choice. Shut UP.

And if you were screaming for war and now you think it's just terrible that these soldiers are spending so much time away from their families and that the families are experiencing hardships, elevated divorce rates, and the deaths and injuries are taking too big a toll on the families and our nation, well, hel - LOOOOOOOOO.

I tried to tell people that war has a terrible cost. Having lived the first year of my life with a dad who was in Vietnam, I understand this in a way many people do not. I have seen the toll war takes, the price it exacts YEARS after it is "over." I tried to explain the administration was confusing people deliberately. I tried to make people understand the dangers of getting into this, especially in such an arrogant, self-serving way. But clearly, no one listened to me. Why should they? I'm not famous, I'm certainly not rich, I'm not an 'influence peddler." But man, was I right.

So if you were FOR the war in 2003 and now you are AGAINST the war, I challenge you: DO SOMETHING. Pay the world back for your part, no matter how small, in putting our country into this mess. Volunteer at a VA hospital, send care packages to troops, get involved in a local political race or through a national organization like MoveOn.org. And in the long term, watch the funding levels of the Veteran's Administration in the next few years. Didja know the President, good Christian man that he is, has actually VETOED funding for veterans in the last few years? He has CUT the money that is set aside to help these "brave soldiers" that everyone was so willing to send into war. Sure, send 'em in, Dubya, but pray they get killed becasue the SGLI is a helluva lot cheaper than paying for their medical care, rehabilitation, retraining, etc. Watch that. Contact your legislators and tell them that we cannot abandon these troops once they've served our country honorably and proudly. We OWE IT TO THEM TO TAKE CARE OF THEM. They were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice. Be willing to stand up for them.

And yes, I practice what I preach. I send care packages. I actually organized a mass mailing of care packages to troops from my church in 2004. I send them periodically from my family. My kids help assemble them. And I volunteer with the Democratic-Farmer-Labor party party here in Minnesota. AND I am volunteering to make calls calls for MoveOn.org for the next 3 weeks, until election day.

And I vote. I can't wait to vote.

Oh -- and I TOLD YOU SO.

I am so sorry I was right.

4 comments:

  1. Jennifer,

    I have some problems with the way we are conducting our war in Iraq but I would NEVER associate my name with MoveOn.org. It is on record that MoveOn knowingly and willfully allowed its Action Forum to be used as a platform for racist, anti-Semitic, and anti-Catholic hate speech of the worst kind while MoveOn itself published a hate cartoon directed at Catholics. Google on "MoveOn.org" and "anti-Semitism" or "racism" and you will see what I mean. (My blog contains numerous examples but it is not an impartial source. I encourage the people to whom I write to about this to see for themselves instead of taking my word for it.)

    "Didja know the President, good Christian man that he is, has actually VETOED funding for veterans in the last few years? He has CUT the money that is set aside to help these "brave soldiers" that everyone was so willing to send into war."

    This is disgusting. If the Democrats had put up a decent human being with a body temperature of roughly 98.6 in 2004-- like "Jew Lieberman" as they call him at MoveOn.org-- they would have won the White House by a landslide. They chose to put up MoveOn candidate John Kerry instead, which is why we got four more years.

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  2. Your Viet Nam veteran father has been against the whole war scenario since the beginning as have I. Guess we know the costs from personal experience and further know that those costs are just too high. I'm glad to see that the problems the military families are having are getting some media attention, but the selfish part of me remembers that the families of Viet Nam vets got NOTHING! I gotta get over that and be thankful that this country has learned a few lessons. Love, Mom

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  3. As you know, we are reading Moby Dick for book club.
    I keeping picturing Bush as Ahab.
    Hmmm....

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  4. Susan1:29 PM

    There's no such thing as a just war. But this war? It's about bullying and fearmongering with a li'l bit of swagger tossed on top for decoration.

    My hat is off to all the troops, because I know they are doing their jobs. But their "boss"? He's an idiot.

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