[SPORK] Loving The Troops

Jeff Bone jbone@deepfile.com
Thu, 20 Mar 2003 12:54:27 -0600

On Thursday, Mar 20, 2003, at 12:17 US/Central, JS Kelly wrote:

> to attack someone for 'not supporting the troops' is the same.

I haven't seen this (yet) on this list...  have you?

Look, one of the following holds:

(1)  You can be pissed at management but hold the peons innocent.
(2)  You can be pissed at the peons for following orders.
(3)  You can be pissed at the peons for being peons.
(4)  You can blame society or evolutionary psychology or whatever for 
allowing peons, period.
(5)  You can think all this is goodness and light, and not be pissed at 

(2) is rather ridiculous;  however they got there, the troops *are* in 
the military and they're going to be expected to follow orders within 
the letter of the laws that bind this sort of thing.  Not doing so at 
this point would be acting outside their own self-interest.  It's 
unreasonable to expect that.  (3) is perhaps more sound, but I'd argue 
it's also too narrow in perspective;  Gene seems to partially blame the 
peons for being peons --- which may be partially fair --- but he also 
seems to think that folks who would be peons are also guilty of all 
sorts of other nasty things.  Experience just doesn't support that view 
in my case;  I've got lots of friends that are ex-military, and most of 
'em are even more circumspect about what's going on than I am.  (4) May 
be entirely valid - Gene's viewpoint seems to include elements of this 
- but it's also basically useless hand-wringing about the way the world 
actually is.  (5) is a non-starter, at least for me.  So that leaves 
(1) as the most reasonable and supportable POV to adopt.

I'll also point out that harboring ill-will for the troops is kind of 
like assuming the complicity of the Afghan people in the 9/11 attacks 
--- a position I held a year ago which, in hindsight, was entirely 
stupid and for which I got my ass chewed off on this very list.  Ahem. 

> myself, i
> think that i support the troops more than the administration does, in 
> that
> i'd send them back home to their families, rather than put them at risk
> under these circumstances.

Me too.  But unf., however much we dislike it --- it is what it is.  If 
we're going to harbor ill-will towards anybody in this whole mess, 
let's make sure it's directed at the architects and authors.  Who, 
notably, are not on the front lines.