Thursday, February 23, 2006

Standing up for our fallen Heroes...

I must apologize for the poor quality of this photo but it is a scanned image of an AP photo that appeared in a local paper showing a protester kicking a balled up American flag. Obviously it caught my attention and the text copy described a Kansas church group that goes to military memorial services for soldiers killed in combat to protest the soldiers. The name of the group is the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka and the leader is Fred Phelps who has a history of such protests over the years. Many of these protests are organized by Phelps daughter, Margie who states that the soldiers are being killed because "Westboro believes God is angry at America for it's tolerance of homosexuality. That's why soldiers are dying"


Phelps and his daughter even protested the funeral of President Ronald Reagan to bring attention to their cause...

To the rescue... They call themselves the "Patriot Guard Riders" and they are more than 5,000 strong, forming to counter protest Phelps and the members of Westboro Baptist Church . They ride their motorcycles, only after being invited by the soldiers family, to the memorial service to show their support for the fallen hero and the family. Please follow this link to NewsMax: http://www.newsmax.com/popunders/mainpop_internal.htm?rnd=0.7228553036059492 for an outstanding article on these riders...

Since seeing the initial article on the Westboro Baptist Church and their protest, I had an interesting conversation with a dear friend on this subject. We spoke about how soldiers returning from their service are greeted with applause and sincere welcome and gratitude by those seeing them in the airport. Unlike when soldiers returned from prior wars and only to find abuse, both verbally and physical... We also spoke about how you do not see protesters now attacking the troops verbally or otherwise like in the past. It was mutually agreed that the reason you do not see these attacks now is probably not due to the protesters fearing the soldier, or even the soldiers family, but fear of those Americans who will now stand up for the soldier, the family, and the United States of America...

17 comments:

VoiceOfReason said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
RightsideVA said...

Voice of reason,
You had a good post going all of the way up to when you took the cheap shot at the President. As the blog name says I lean to the Right on most issues.I like President Bush and I believe he is doing a good job at a tough time. I would like to see him tougher on immigration and veto some of that spending coming out of Washington but I know and feel that he is exactly what we need after the attacks of 9-11 for we can no longer treat it like a "Law Enforcement" problem like Clinton did.

You are welcome to post here, but cheap shots like that will be deleted...

Friend from the Left said...

I disagree that 'fear' of anything is the reason for the lack of abuse on returning troops. I rather think that it is respect for what they they are doing. I think many of us who do not agree with the war, or many of the policies of the government (particularly this administration), still have a lot of respect for the Americans that put their lives on the line in its service.
A few posts back you and a couple of like-minded commentors listed many perceptions as to how protestors of the war do not support our troops. They are your perceptions, and thus your reality. But I would disagree with many of those as well. I believe that many arguements could be made as to the lack of supporting the troops obvious by decisions of the administration. Namely going to war unprepared to maintain security, lacking armor, cutting veterns benefits...etc. I think it takes much more than wrapping one's self in the flag and spouting 'patriotic' rhetoric to truely 'support our troops.'

In short I think there are very real feelings of compassion, gratitude and respect for our service men and women these days. Especially from those who oppose the war, and I find it dismaying that in America, that affords us freedoms and liberties that our military fights to defend, there are those that think expressing opinions against policies are un-American. When the freedom to disagree and protest are perhaps the most American liberties we have. They should be cherished, even when they are not in line with one's own personal ideals.

Surely we can agree on that??

Anonymous said...

That's Republican/right wing "free speech" for you -- you're free to speak as long as you agree with everything the blogger puts up.
Visitors to this illiterate site: Go buy a newspaper, watch the TV, get your "news" from a real news source. Don't come here unless you want propaganda, because it's just like the Soviet Union and the Third Reich -- dissidents are censored if not shouted down.

RightsideVA said...

Anonymous,
Your first post was deleted because you took a cheap shot at the President. I welcome debate at this site and I have had several informative debates with locals up here on many issues. All involved can learn from a informative show of opinions and in fact it is welcomed by many to see other viewpoints presented. The thing that is not welcomed is taking cheap shots at the President for his efforts during a critical and important time in history. If you come here looking for cheap shots back you will not get them from me. I will not allow space to be wasted on school yard fights when many look for information here instead. This is an example of "Republican Right Wing Free Speech" that you mentioned above. Just not a space to waste time with petty fights. I too lived in Florida for awhile and was one of very few Conservative Republicans that lived in Key West but enjoyed it when I could have an informative debate\discussion with those of different viewpoints...
How is the weather in Florida?

Anonymous said...

Weather here isn't all that great -- 64 and windy right now.
Look, I'm happy (I guess) that someone can be so loyal -- you'd have been great to have around if the monarchy hadn't been overthrown -- but we didn't elect George Bush king, emperor or caesar. And we have this little thing in the U.S. where we can criticize elected officials. I realize George's ego is fragile and he can't stand anyone not agreeing with him, but until he and his neocon Nazis launch a coup and take away (THE REST OF) our freedoms, I've got the right to criticize him.
I don't think blogs like yours serve any purpose. There ought to be dialog, not monolog where one person sets an agenda and anyone who disagrees gets a rag stuffed in their mouth. I guess you'd be happy with that, though. I'm sure George, Dick and Co. would.

SWAC Girl said...

Machiavelli said you must fight evil with evil ... or be destroyed.

To survive we must have a strong leader who will do what is necessary to protect the American people. George W. Bush is that strong leader.

"Friend from the Left" and "Anonymous" think those who support President Bush and the soldiers want to stifle the voices of the anti-war crowd, which is inaccurate. Our Constitution guarantees that you have every right to object to the war.

My problem with you is when you go out on the streets to protest and, through the courtesy of lightning-speed media, it makes its way back to our troops. With the lopsided coverage of anything anti-American built up in the mainstream media, the troops could get the perception that everyone on the homefront is against the war and, perhaps, against them. It happened during Vietnam ... and it was not pretty. Anti-war protesters were violent -- burning American flags (now THAT'S patriotic), trashing and burning vehicles in the streets, and overtaking and burning buildings.

Be honest: If you had been a young 18-year-old soldier in Vietnam, would that make you feel as if America was behind you? What about when you returned home in uniform and had insults and trash hurled at you?

It's not just the troops who are over there who need to feel our support; it's their families here at home. Think about that Marine's eight-year-old son when he sees people protesting what his father is doing in Iraq. What does the 15-year-old daughter think when she sees people on the streets of her city saying the war that her dad -- her hero -- is fighting in is unfair and that her President is a worst terrorist than the ones who killed 3,000 innocent Americans on 9-11?

If you have "very real feelings of compassion, gratitude, and respect" for our servicemen and women then get out there and show it! Attend a Support the Troops rally. Take dinner to the family whose loved one is away at war. Attend a military family pot-luck dinner, make a contribution, mow that soldier's lawn because his wife is home alone and pregnant. You can even just send a note of thanks -- but DO SOMETHING instead of sitting back and complaining that you are misunderstood by those who DO support our heroes.

FrankenBoy said...

Anon 7:56am,

"I realize George's ego is fragile and he can't stand anyone not agreeing with him,"

Did you see what they did to George at the King funeral? Would slick willy have sat thru that attack by an ex President or others? Maybe it's people like you who can't take it anymore cause you dont own the media anymore?

VoiceOfReason said...

How many of you -- especially Frankenboy and SwacGirl who are responding to these have any real experience in the military? (Crickets chirping)
Well, I do. 20 years worth. And I'm the guy you're dismissing.
Believe me, we don't sit around crying because someone said something that hurt our widdle feelings. We just do our jobs no matter who the commander-in-chief is -- or whether he's a freaking looney toon or not.
I've been through the worst times (Carter) the best times (Reagan) and the next-to-worst times (Clinton and Bush.)
Yes, Clinton AND Bush.
Clinton, because of the "peace dividend" nonsense and the drawdown.
Bush, because of his Oedipal obsession with Iraq.
If GWB had stuck with the plan in Afghanistan and not veered off on some nutball course on the advice of pudgy little faggots like Rove and Cheney and the rest of the neocon Nazis, we might all still be united. But NOOOOO ... he had to avenge Daddy ... or, as many of us suspect, out-do him. His father was a good president and he stopped at the border of Iraq for a good reason.
Someday you will all wake up and smell the coffee. George W. Bush is on a par with Herbert Hoover, Jimmy Carter and the rest of the worst presidents in our history. He is a mediocrity.
But believe me when I tell you that the military just lets any negative things roll right off their back, just as they did in the immediate post-Vietnam period. Ain't nothin' but a thang. So don't get all maudlin on our behalf. We ain't sweatin' the petty stuff. Stop doing it yourselves. And stop insulting people -- it doesn't get us anywhere. Especially when you don't know who the hell you're talking to or about.

Andrew said...

What a wonderful world it would be if critics of the war could make their points without using such a haughty, condescending tone. Oh well... I just wanted to let you know that one of my brothers saw Rev. Phelps' group making noise in Yankton, SD. That was the first I had heard of them. For the life of me, I couldn't figure out what they were trying to accomplish. Pretty frightening; obviously, not all the wackos are on the Left.

RightsideVA said...

"Pretty frightening; obviously, not all the wackos are on the Left."

I agree. There are extremes in both directions and that is one of the best things about our freedoms and ability to express our thoughts.

It is like the issues of Gun Rights and Abortion. I don't believe that either issue will ever completely go away for there is so much distance between the extremes. No one side will ever get control for the people will not allow it...

I myself don't believe in abortion as birth control. Yes in a "True" instance if it is needed to save the mothers life, but No if it is used because "We choose not to have a child at this time"...

Gun Control? If you could prove that all guns will be kept out of the hands of criminals. Until then each citizen, with proper background check, should be allowed to carry concealed. Read John Lotts book "More Guns, Less Crime" and there are many stats proving that...

SWAC Girl said...

Voiceofreason said, "How many of you -- especially Frankenboy and SwacGirl who are responding to these have any real experience in the military? (Crickets chirping)
Well, I do. 20 years worth. And I'm the guy you're dismissing."

Why must I have experience in the military in honor to respect and thank them for their service? And how are we "dismissing" you ... if, indeed, you were military?

My husband is an Air Force veteran from the Vietnam era. We have many military friends who are veterans, are in Iraq, or in other places around the world. We listen to THEM, thank you very much, for the way to honor the troops and their families. THEY are appreciative.

You can think what you want but you seem to have some misplaced resentment and bitterness because you are belittling folks who want to honor our troops. And your choice of descriptions for presidents, past and present, is not respectful so I WILL dismiss that. Let THAT negative roll off your back....

zen said...

How's this for what the troops want?

An overwhelming majority of 72% of American troops serving in Iraq think the U.S. should exit the country within the next year, and nearly one in four say the troops should leave immediately, a new Le Moyne College/Zogby International survey shows.

Of course many of you will likely dismiss this as propaganda from the "liberal" media, or something else as it doesn't support your war attitudes.

RightsideVA said...

Zen,

Thanks for the post and please notice that it was not deleted by the selfish, one sided, Home Skooled, blog master as many have expected it to be deleted... Facts, opinions, and links are permitted but cheap shots are not...

Did go to link and Zogby is a well known name. Unfortunately they do not provide the questions that were asked...

Did find this in the Investors Business Daily on 2 March 06 regarding this poll....

"One big problem, though: The poll was conducted on behalf of the Center for Peace and Global Studies at Le Moyne College, a highly partisan anti-war group. And Zogby withheld some of the details how his survey was conducted for "Security puposes." So are Zogby's findings legitimate? We have no way of knowing."

SWAC Girl said...

Zen may want to check out www.vetsforfreedom.com, an organization started by veterans "to give Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans, their families and other supporters a long overdue voice in addressing the mission, role and support needed to achieve victory in Iraq and Afghanistan. This effort has been established not only to mobilize support, but also to highlight the sacrifices and achievements made by countless United States military personnel as part of this worthy cause."

The mainstream press is only interested in promoting negative news about President Bush and the war on terror, and even Zogby appears to have capitulated to the anti-war crowd by withholding select details of the questionable poll noted by zen.

Information from another Zogby poll that was conducted in September for the Center for International Private Enterprise showed that 77% of Iraqi businesses anticipate growth in the national economy over the next two years and 69% of respondents describe themselves as being “optimistic” about Iraq's economic future.

I would ask zen to visit the local National Guard and talk with the troops and their families to see how they feel about the war. No one WANTS war ... but, unfortunately, it will always be there. Let's support those men and women who are willing to put their necks on the line for us and show our gratitude to them by stopping the constant drumbeat of negativity used to advance the liberal agenda regarding the war.

zen said...

Do you ever consider that perhaps the news is indeed bad, not just the press coverage?
I would ask where that "liberal media" was in the build-up to the war? Why were the tough questions not asked and investigated until much later? How did this so-called media treat the Clinton impeachment, or the bogus Whitewater scandal?
My point is that the idea of a 'liberal media bias' is exhausted and simply not accurate. There may be bias with concern to sensationalism—if it bleeds it leads—but that is not the sole property of the left. Look at the constant "alerts" on Fox, look at the constant obsession with the next missing pretty white woman, the laughable "war on Christmas."

Look at the polls about how the majority of people feel about Bush and the war. I repeat, the majority. This is not an agenda, it is a reflection of reality. And though it may be tough for some to swallow, it does not mean a disrespect for those serving in uniform. It says much more about the over-reach and underestimation of the war-makers.

Of course the people in service of this coutry deserve our respect and appreciation. We have an agreement with our military that they will serve and protect us, perform their duty with honor, and in exchange, our part of that agreement is to not abuse them, to not send them into conflicts without a clear and accomplishable mission. The problem is that the goalposts continue to move and we are breaking our side of the agreement.

I appreciate the links and will continue to get information from a variety of sources, it's the only way to attempt to be informed. As is civil debate and an open mind. I encourage our collective dialogue to remain that way.

JasonSpalding said...

Well in America, companies that support these nuts need to be shamed. I have posted some more of my thoughts on my blog

http://jasonspalding.blogspot.com/