Saluting with misty eyes
There is one small thing that I have a challenge with in regards to Kevin Tillman's post on the page you gave us:
Luckily this country is still a democracy.
This country is NOT, as we are taught in school, a democracy. The United States, on a national level, is a flat out Republic, wherein the people elect those that make the decisions. A minor point, possibly; however, a common misconception.
Actually, I ahve a couple of challenges with Mr. Tillman's post, yet they don't really have to do with the thread at hand, so I'll leave them out of my reply.
As for John Boehner passing the buck: It isn't his to pass. Rep. Boehner stands absolutely nowhere in the chain of command for the miltary. While he can take no credit for any of the good that is being done in Iraq, he cannot- by the same token- be handed any blame for anything that people don't like about the war. He was, very simply, stating the facts as he (and many others) see it: the leadership on the ground usually has more to do with the way a war if fought than some politician who sits in an ivory tower 10,000 miles away. While Rep. Boehner placed the blame on the leadership, Sen. Kerry appeared to place a sweeping generality on the service members around the world.
Once Rep. Boehner made his statement, the Democratic leadership immediately jumped on it and accused him of blaming the troops for the failures and downturns in the war. As Noah is asking us to fully read Sen. Kerry's statements from 1971, I am asking you to read Rep. Boehner's statement again. He said (among other things): "The fact is, the generals on the ground are in charge...". Now, ppossibly the fact that I am a Marine, and (impending gratuitous dig) part of the uneducated masses, I cannot truly understand a man's words when he states them, yet it seems to me that he very specifically does NOT blame the troops, but rather the leadership. What Sen. Dean and others are doing is attempting to is to shift the focus away from Sen. Kerry, andplace it back on the Republicans in an attempt to do a bit of damage control... thereby bringing the troops back into the picture, just as Sen. Kerry was accused of doing.
As far as Sen. Kerry's "apology"... Oh, puh-leez. He apologized for being mis-interpreted. Perhaps my parents were a bit too strict, yet if I apologized to them for them thinking I had said something wrong, instead of apologizing for saying it, then it would not have been a fun time on the old homestead. The apology would not have been accepted, as it would not have been sincere.
Wonder if anyone has ever read the Declaration of Independence?
ACtually, yes, I have... and I am wondering what it has to do with the current flap. The Declaration of Independene was very simply a list of greivances the colonies had against their King and stated the fact that the separate colonies were (in the immortal words of Jeff Spicoli) "going to have to get some cool rules of their own."
As you brought this document into the picture, there are several ways that it can be taken, which can also be used to prove the point that what people say is very much open to misuse, and use for someone's own evil intent:
Quote 1) "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. "
Actually that is what we are supporting in Iraq. The previous government was denying that, and we stepped in to help them regain these freedoms.
Quote 2) "That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government..."
Does that mean you are suggesting that the people iverthrow the current government because it is, in your thoughts destructive of these ends?" NO, of course, not. I do not for a second believe that... HOWEVER, that is the very thing that is being done, here, with both Sen. Kerry and Rep. Boehner: their words are being used in a way that was never meant, and being interpreted by someone in the worst possible way to attack them.
As my friend Noah has stated, Both of these men's words were taken for a ride by political operatives who had an agenda of their own that had nothing to do with the best interests of anyone other than themselves. I stated in my opening post for this thread that I believe Sen. Kerry was actually making (well, attempting to make) a joke at the President's expense. The Republicans used it to boost their flagging poll numbers and to assist with their chances in the upcoming elections.
Rep. Boehner made a statement that placed the failures of the war flat on the generals on the ground, and Sen. Dean (among others) immediately used it in a weak attempt to score very cheap political points.
It all boils down to my original premise: Senator John Kerry should have immediately apologized for mis-speaking himself, as most responsible adults would have done, and thbis entire thing would have been over with, and the Republicans would not have been given anything to deal with. Something along the lines of:
"I was very simply attempting to make a comment about the President's policies in Iraq, and did so very badly. I certainly meant no disrespect to any of our men and women in uniform, and regret any implication that I did."
Now, Mr. Kerry... How friggin' hard was that?
You may burn my flag... only after you wrap yourself in it first.