Sunday, May 02, 2004

Our Honor, Our Grief - Keep politicians and the media away from our fallen soldiers: "I have lived through the numbing sadness of going to Dover to pick up my son, and have experienced the body-shaking pain of having to lay to his final rest a member of the U.S. military.
The idea of criticizing President Bush on his choice not to attend the funerals is ludicrous. The simple fact is that President Bush either attends all or attends none for to attend some could be interpreted as an insult to those fallen heroes whose funerals he is seen to have 'spurned.' Besides, the logistics are impossible. On the day that my son was being buried in New Jersey his two buddies he was killed with were being buried at the same time at opposite ends of Pennsylvania. What was the president to do when the helicopter crashed and killed 17 soldiers? How to attend 17 funerals without forcing the families to wait for the president?
The arguments put forth to have the ban on media coverage lifted vary from allowing the American people to bear witness to the sacrifice of the soldiers and thus honor them, to the need to deny President Bush the opportunity to hide the real costs in human terms of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Steve Capus, executive producer of "NBC Nightly News," arrogantly and presumptuously spoke for me when he stated, "It would seem that the only reason somebody would come out against the use of these pictures is that they are worried about the political fallout." Well I am that "somebody," and as I looked at those pictures the tears were not running because of my worry about political fallout. In all the criticism there has never once been put forth a single argument of how having the media coverage lifted would be of benefit to the loved ones of these heroes. We are never taken into account. We are the collateral damage in this all so obvious ideological struggle."

This is a powerful piece worth considering. It might do the Left some good to consider the fact that, though Bush may actually be Hitler/The Devil/insert other invective here, he may also be considering the well-being of the families in question, as well as the honor of the soldier underneath that flag. Just picture, as every coffin comes off the plane at Dover, a throng of cameras flash, and tapes roll. The soldiers standing by do their duty and salute their fallen comrade, but all the while the click, click, flash, flash of the media surrounds them. Oh, but you say the media wouldn't be there for every coffin? They'd just film it once and re-use the pictures right? Then what's the point, exactly? I thought the argument was to show the American people the evidence of the mounting casualties. Either way, it's unnecessary, except as an attack on the President, and an insult to the fallen and their loved ones.

I'll leave you with one of Mr. Griffin's parting thoughts: "If it is truly the intention of those who support the lifting of the ban to honor these gallant individuals while giving the American public the opportunity to grieve with them--and if it is truly the intention to bear witness to sacrifice and view at first hand the cost of this war--then let them visit the families of those who freely chose to join the military family. Let them visit the grave sites, let them journey to Fort Bragg or Fort Campbell or Fort Hood and speak to those who have returned or who might soon be joining the fight."

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