Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Stop using our troops to score cheap political points

I was reading an article about the towns in Wisconsin that voted to bring home the troops. The AP article written by Emily Fredrix contained the following:
"The morale of soldiers - and their safety - could dip when they hear about such referendums passing, said Bill Richardson, treasurer of Vote No To Cut And Run, a group that opposed the measures.
"It's a political statement and it's hurting people and it could cost lives," said Richardson, 63, a one-time bandmaster in the Wisconsin Army National Guard."

I'll tell you, I am so sick of people speaking for "the soldiers" in Iraq. It's just stupid on its face. "The soldiers" are just like Americans everywhere. They differ and have different experiences and opinions.

Sure, some soldiers may get bummed out that the folks back home don't support the war. Others will probably get excited that there is a chance they'll get out of there early, or not have to go back. I just returned from an 18 month deployment, 11 of which were in Iraq, and I'm still a member of the National Guard. I think most soldiers, being educated and on the whole pretty intelligent, will realize the votes are just politics and not likely to translate to anything meaningful in their lives.

Anytime a person speaks for "the soldiers" as a group the person is just trying to use the soldiers as an excuse to promote his or her own viewpoint. I think it is exploiting our troops, and I'm sick of hypocrites who say they support the troops using them for cheap political purposes.


Anonymous said...

G.W. Bush - Our Third Worst President

Mike said...

""The soldiers" are just like Americans everywhere. They differ and have different experiences and opinions."

This is something many Americans (across the political spectrum) have trouble wrapping their heads around. On the right, the idea that there could be soldiers who actually supported John Kerry makes their heads explode. And on the left, the fact that not all soldiers are mindless right-wing automaton killing machines returns an error of "does not compute."

I've actually run into this problem at my AFROTC det. Some of my fellow 100s (freshmen) are having trouble understanding that liberals/democrats are allowed in the military too. There have been some pretty heated arguments that have taken place between cadets in the dorms; I don't think it has really affected the morale of the corps yet, but there's always a chance that it might. Something to keep an eye on.

As for me, I'm one of those crazy libertarians...I've actually had a few cadets come up to me and ask me about libertarianism...they had never really come into contact with one of "my kind" before. Pretty funny stuff.