Friday, November 25, 2005

Friday Stories

Cindy Sheehan is back in the news. She flew into Texas today in order to participate in another war protest near the Bush ranch. The protesters are trying a new approach:
Before Sheehan's arrival, more than 100 protesters at the camp ate a traditional Iraqi meal for Thanksgiving _ salmon, lentils, rice with almonds and a salad of parsley, tomatoes, cucumbers and bulgur wheat. They said they wanted to call attention to the innocent Iraqi victims in addition to the more than 2,100 U.S. soldiers killed since the war began in March 2003.

"It's significant because the people of Iraq are suffering under our occupation, and for people in America it's business as usual stuffing themselves on fat turkeys," said Tammara Rosenleaf, whose husband is an Army soldier to be deployed in a few weeks.
Are these people really so disillusioned? Do they really hate America this much?

First of all, the number of innocent Iraqi casualties is not anywhere near the amount that these protesters portray it to be. In fact, it is considerably less. The majority of Iraqi citizens now enjoy numerous freedoms that they would have never even dreamed about under Saddam.

And with stories like this coming from good embedded journalists in Iraq, it's hard to say with a straight face that the presence of American soldiers is causing the Iraqis to suffer. The statement made by this particular war protester is merely another example of someone whose views ignore the basic facts about the war. These protesters are a product of the rhetoric of and Cindy Sheehan, and they are just plain wrong.

In a very real, very serious war, being wrong about its essential facts can be extremely dangerous.

Another scary thought: some of these people are school teachers, which means they have a verry malleable audience in the form of their students everyday. Consider this story:
A high school teacher is facing questions from administrators after giving a vocabulary quiz that included digs at President Bush and the extreme right.

Bret Chenkin, a social studies and English teacher at Mount Anthony Union High School, said he gave the quiz to his students several months ago. The quiz asked students to pick the proper words to complete sentences.

One example: "I wish Bush would be (coherent, eschewed) for once during a speech, but there are theories that his everyday diction charms the below-average mind, hence insuring him Republican votes." "Coherent" is the right answer.
The students who took this quiz will be voting in the next election, and chances are, this teacher is one of their primary sources of information. How do you think they'll vote if they pay attention in class?

This has dangerous implications for our national security, and we must do all we can to keep these kinds of people from the responsibility of governing.