Thursday, February 05, 2009

Some years ago, I was hanging out with a friend of mine from Colorado. It was around voting time and he came up to me incredulously and asked, "I know you all [he meant minorities of any stripe I believe] get your own months, but do we really need a Cesar Chavez Day? I don't think celebrating a boxer is all that important." I explained to him that Cesar Chavez wasn't the boxer, but the man who fought for equal rights for field workers across America and is often compared with Martin Luther King in terms of what he did for "his people" (a term I don't though different colored skin makes one group a completely different people). He understood what I said, but had been so incredulous from the begining that even after my explanation, the idea of voting for a Cesar Chavez day still sounded absurd to him.

It seems the same thing is happening with the stimulous bill. People who don't really know what it is they're decrying, but do so with enough incredulity it sticks, are slowly killing what the country needs. They yell out, "Family planning!?" or "Hollywood!?" and the italics indicate that tone they can use...and then, no matter how easy it is to explain (ie. Hollywood provides jobs to Californians, one of the states most hardly hit by the economic meltdown), it's too late--the level of disdain for the idea they thought it was lingers over and then Hollywood is cut from the stimulous.

I understand bi-partisan, but seriously...when Republicans were in control, democrats were called "obstructionist", now the Democrats are in control and they still can't do anything because the Republicans are an even more minor party and dragging their feet as well...only this time, it's not called obstructionism, it's bipartisanship.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


Your little brother followed you to West Point and the Army. We have a lot of ROTC and West Point cadets who read this blog. What message do you hope they will take from your memoir?
You have to train to be adaptive. A cadet should understand that the war he or she joins four or five years from now will be a different war altogether. The war in Afghanistan in 2009 is totally different than the war I fought in 2003-2004. A well-rounded education including self-directed outside reading and broad exposure through travel may not give you the specific answers about the culture, terrain, or enemy of tomorrow's battlefields, but it will at least give you the questions to ask so that you can adapt faster and smarter than your adversary.

2:52 PM  

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