The feigned outrage from the right over John Kerry's remarks are incredibly depressing and disgusting, and another reason for my ongoing pessimism over Tuesday's elections.
It would be one thing if these right-wing politicans and pundits were genuinely outraged at what he said, but the sad truth is, they're not. They are ginning up controversy over some misspoken remarks to get their base fired up for an election in which it had been so demoralized.
To hear draft dodgers like Bush, Cheney, Limbaugh, Hannity, etc., go after Vietnam vet Kerry about a remark in which the senator, at a campaign rally, botched a joke (he was trying to point out how Bush's general cluelessness and lack of sense of history of the volatile middle east has this country now bogged down in Iraq) is revolting. This gave them an excuse to jump up and claim Kerry was somehow mocking the military. And, as we know too well, the sheep who listen to talk radio and watch Fox News will happily be led along by these scum.
You wonder is there any depth these slime won't sink to score cheap political points. Then again, this is a movement that savages a man suffering from Parkinson's Disease to score cheap political points, so I guess we know the answer to that.
And the thing is, even if Kerry really was saying what the right-wingers claim, there is a sad grain of truth to it. Does anyone really think, in our all-volunteer army, that the sons and daughters of the privileged - or even the middle class - are joining up to be sent over to become a statistic in the carnage that is Iraq? In news reports, when you see the names and faces of those 2,800+ killed so far (105 in the Month of October alone) you see a lot of Hispanic names and faces, a lot of African American faces. And I doubt too many of the white faces gave up a semester at Harvard or Stamford to join up. I don't get the sense that the sons and daughters of the country club set, never mind of GOP politicans or right-wing radio hosts, are rushing down to their local army recruiting offices. It tends to be kids for whom the army may be the only way out of a life of a dreary small town or inner city future.
I may be wrong, and maybe the American people - this time - will not allow themselves to be distracted by the shiny ball, but, given recent history in this country, I don't think so.
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