Monday, August 23, 2004

Apologize for what?

Bob Dole’s insistence that John Kerry apologize to the US government for his anti-Vietnam war comments is about as funny as it is ridiculous but not unexpected. It has become ?unpatriotic? under the Bush administration and the Republican party to disagree with the party line. It would have been interesting had the Republican party been in charge of the country in 1776. Spouting then the rhetoric they are spouting now would have made them Torries.

It is the duty of every citizen, which makes it the duty of every military officer, to speak up against those things he believes are contrary to American ideals. I have observed many veterans who cannot let go of "being at war" and who insist that ?America right or wrong? is the only way to go. There is a modicum of truth in that approach; we must all strive to do what is in our country’s best interests to ensure its survival. The rub comes in when deciding what the best course is; and the only way to do that fairly and occasionally wisely is through the political process. The First Amendment is its cornerstone; without it, we are no better than the ?enemies? we cherish to hate so much.

Bush’s military record has been questionable from the git-go, and the attacks on Kerry really are meant to divert attention away from that fact. I’m not surprised that Bush seems too ready to commit the country to war; it’s easy to practice bravado when you’ve never been shot at. If anyone needs to apologize to our government, it’s Dole and those folks out there who have so little faith in our own leadership they are willing to disparage our country’s awarding of medals to Kerry as undeserved.

Maybe the best thing to do would be to get off the fear mongering, which is what this play-battle about who would be the best Commander in Chief is, and get onto something more substantive. American cannot live on security alone.