Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Why the War Supporters Who are Eligible to Enlist but don't are Hypocrites

Wash Monthly links to a piece by Hitchens that basically says that the fact that war supporters and their kids don't enlist is no big deal since, after all, we support police officers, fireman, and social workers but don't necessarily feel inclined to join any of those occupations.

No, wait, I got this one.

This comparison is just bupkis.

The situations are not analogous because (a) there is a well documented and urgent shortage of enlistees to serve as cannon fodder in Iraq; there is not an equivalently well documented and urgent shortage of police, firepersons, or social workers here (and if there were, there is the question of how willing the public would be to fund them, which is to say, not very much).

and (b) I don't know of anyone, or any organization that is going around saying that if you don't support the police, the firepersons, or social workers, that you are unAmerican and traitorous. In contrast, this is exactly what is being alleged of those that don't "support the war".

And I don't know of anyone that is going around saying that if you don't like governor (insert name of republican or democratic officeholder) or if you are unhappy with the high level of (insert description of social ill) than you are against and are in fact inflicting harm upon that state's police, firepersons, social workers and teacher's unions (oops, forgot this last group is group non grata in conservative circles).

But this is exactly what conservatives like Rove and Hitchens are alleging about liberals. They are saying that people that oppose the president or his war policies are hurting the war effort while simultaneously claiming that they themselves are exempt from criticism and that so long as they slap a Support Our Troops magnet on their SUV then they are in the clear while liberals who insist on criticizing the administration and the media that carries its water and shines its shoes are not.

So, yes, chickenhawks, especially of the young, College Republican variety, are hypocrites. If they claim the right to criticize liberal opposition to the war or the president, but don't act in direct support of the policies they favor than they are hypocrites and don't deserve a proper hearing in the court of public opinion. Put up or shut up.

Thus endeth the lesson for today.

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