How The Blue States See The Military
Rochelle Reed, the Features Editor of the Tribune in San Luis Obispo, California, wrote a column about her shock when her son, Evan, enlisted in the army out of the blue:
"Two years ago in September, as my friends were sending their kids off to Berkeley or Stanford or UCLA, I drove my son, Evan, to our local recruitment center where he joined the U.S. Army. ...
"Never in a million years did I imagine my son would join the Army. Nor did Evan. In high school, he’d hang up on recruiters who called the house. He’d blurt, 'Get away from me!' to the ones who trawled the local hangouts. Our home was liberal Democrat and anti-war and now, at 21, he was a Michael Moore fan. The night before he left, he spent his time reading 'Stupid White Men.'"
It must be quite a shock for a Blue State Mom to spend all that time indoctrinating her kid, teaching him the military is stupid and Michael Moore is a genius, only to have it all go horribly, tragically wrong. Here he could have been safely smoking dope at Berkeley and being lectured by tenured hippie radicals on the evils of capitalism and he throws it all away to be a grunt infantryman. Kids!
"When I tell people that Evan has joined the Army, their reactions are almost always the same: their faces freeze, they pause way too long, and then they say, 'I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry for you.'
"I hang my head and look mournful, accepting their sympathy for the worry that lives in me. But as it dawns on them that Evan wasn’t drafted—Vietnam still clings to my generation—their expressions become quizzical, then disbelieving."
The shame of it all! Why didn't he become a drug dealer or something respectable instead of a warmonger razing villages in a manner reminiscent of Genghis Khan?
"I know what they’re thinking: Why in the world would any kid in his right mind choose to enlist when we’re in the middle of a war?"
Why? Why? Why? Why would anyone risk their life for their country? It's a pretty puzzling riddle for the Me Generation of the Baby Boomers.
"I begin telling them the story, desperate to assure them it wasn’t arrogant patriotism or murderous blood lust that persuaded him to join. What finally hooked him was a recruiter’s comment that if he thought the country’s role in Iraq was so screwed up, he should try to fix it."She's got a point. My friends in the Air Force all signed up for the arrogant patriotism and murderous blood lust. You know who you are. Me, I signed up for the chow. I LOVED those C-rations, especially the beans & weiners. And the boned chicken, c'est magnifique!
"And on a deeper, personal level, he signed up hoping that somehow the Army would help him find what young men these days often try to fill with alcohol, drugs and video games: a sense of purpose."Alcohol, drugs, video games, or the army. For lefty moms, the world is full of bad choices for their sons.
Labels: Rochelle Reed