Thursday, August 18, 2005

On Elitism, Sacrifice, and War

Earlier this month, I wrote a piece about the sacrifices of war and why it's only the poor and middle class that are paying the price for this conflict.

I guess Bob Herbert reads this blog.... ;)

For the most part, the only people sacrificing for this war are the troops and their families, and very few of them are coming from the privileged economic classes. That's why it's so easy to keep the troops out of sight and out of mind. And it's why, in the third year of a war started by the richest nation on earth, we still get stories like the one in Sunday's Times that began:

"For the second time since the Iraq war began, the Pentagon is struggling to replace body armor that is failing to protect American troops from the most lethal attacks by insurgents."

Scandalous incompetence? Appalling indifference? Try both. Who cares? This is a war fought mostly by other people's children. The loudest of the hawks are the least likely to send their sons or daughters off to Iraq.

He goes on to point out that not only aren't people sacrificing for this war (I mean, c'mon, Prez...a FIVE week vacation? The longest any president has ever taken? In the middle of a war? The first war we've ever unilaterally declared on a sovereign nation? And it's going so badly????), but no one even really cares!

I was in Jacksonville, Fla., a few days ago and watched in amusement as a young woman emerged from a restaurant into 95-degree heat and gleefully exclaimed, "All right, let's go shopping!" The war was the furthest thing from her mind.
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