Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Wussification of American Society


If you’ve ever wondered why Caleeforneeya is called "the land of fruits and nuts," you need look no further than today’s edition of the Los Angeles Times and its incredible offering by guest commentator Joel Stein, on “Warriors and Wusses.” At least with this clown, you know what you’re dealing with, because Stein outs himself in the first sentence as admitting he does not support our troops.

“I DON'T SUPPORT our troops. This is a particularly difficult opinion to have, especially if you are the kind of person who likes to put bumper stickers on his car. Supporting the troops is a position that even Calvin is unwilling to urinate on,” writes Mr. Stein.

What is it about the American psyche that causes our kids to want to “play army man” until we’re old enough to understand the meaning of boot camp? As Stein states, anyone “signing up for eight years of unknown danger” is who he wants to hang with in Vegas.

How patriotic.

There is one painful truth that is exposed in the stark spotlight of Stein’s wuss-less gaze: “being against the war and saying you support the troops is one of the wussiest positions the pacifists have ever taken — and they're wussy by definition. It's as if the one lesson they took away from Vietnam wasn't to avoid foreign conflicts with no pressing national interest but to remember to throw a parade afterward.”

Cynical, perhaps.
Painfully true, unfortunately.
Wussiful?

Stein only partially redeems himself by admitting sympathy for people who joined up to protect our country, especially after 9/11, who he believes were "were tricked into fighting in Iraq."

He only gets partial credit because that idea does not square with the majority of responses I have had from US soldiers when asked what and why they are doing what they’re doing in Iraq.

Maybe that’s the loss of touch with reality that comes with the territory when, like Stein, you “grow up with money, did well in school and hasn't so much as served on jury duty for his country.”

Stein isn’t advocating spitting on returning veterans like they did after the Vietnam War, which is good, because he’d likely not be spitting much of anything after trying that about once. And he is critical of celebrating people for doing something we don't think was a good idea.

Hey, Joel, stay home; no one wants a wet blanket at a parade. And you’re missing the point: The parade and appreciation is for the service and personal sacrifice of the men and women in uniform. It’s not about the politics. Sorry you’re so confused.

Beyond these comments, I am not going to even attempt to impugn Joel Stein's character for choosing to express his wussiness in writing 'Warriors and Wusses," but simply point out that the only reason he can get away with writing such ideas is because there have been more warriors than wusses in America's history.

If this piece was meant to be a tongue-in-cheek article, he's choking on it. War is an ugly business, but it does accomplish goals, which is more than can be said for wusses.

2 comments:

Vince M Rowe said...

As a Caifornia native and a decorated Army veteran I do take exception to the comment "the land of fruits and nuts" as I can tell you that I have seen my fair share here in Texas :)

That said, I would have to say that Mr Stein's comments are the exception, not the rule. Trust me, he is way off base here.

Vince

Ray Whitworth said...

"Fruits and Nuts"only apply to San Fransisco, Berkley and a few left out too long in the sun in the Mojave. I too along with Vince have seen many Fruits and Nuts in Texas,one resides every August in Crawford. The other in Highland Park.Mr. Stein just loves attention and what better way to get it than say something stupid,outrageous and unpopular. In other words he has a future as a politician or a talk show host on a 10 watt station.