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Saturday, October 02, 2004

Protesting The Iraq War

America was founded on principles of freedom, among them the freedom of speech, and particularly freedom of political speech. So the question of whether Americans have the right to protest against a war has the answer, "definitely, yes." However, just because one has the right to do something like protest a war doesn't mean that he or she ought to do it.

Today, the protesters send the message that Americans are not of one voice or of one mind on the Iraq war, and that has implications for how various parties respond. The enemy, as in the Vietnam War, is strengthened and emboldened. And our military personnel are confused at a time when they need the undoubted support of those of us at home.

A pretty good argument can be made that activities that embolden the enemy and call into question the degree of support for our troops are not patriotic.

2 comments:

H~ said...

Observations are good to make, but they must be commented on. If I were to not protest war then what's the point of being able to do so. What is wrong with wanting peace. You speak of an enemy, this is not my enemy, this is an enemy picked by people in power that want more money and power. I am a supporter of our troops, and our veterans, which is more than the current adiministration can say. They shouldn't have been put in harms way in the first place H~ your liberal

James Howard Shott said...

You asked: "If I were to not protest war then what's the point of being able to do so?" The repercussions of your protest ought to be a consideration, shouldn't they? Do you often act without thinking? I think it is possible to protest a war without risking demoralizing our troups, or without emboldening the enemy. The problem with the protests over the Iraq war is that they are poorly thought out, and have a very negative impact on the U.S. In such a case, when protests are done in such a way as to have a negative impact on the country, I think that pretty much defines "unpatriotic."

Nothing is wrong with wanting peace. Where the problem arises is that some people think peace at any cost is desirable. It isn't. Some people think war is never justified. They are wrong. And by the way, terrorists ARE our enemy. Terrorists have twice attacked the World Trade Center, once attacked the Pentagon, and attacked the USS Cole, and some embassies, to name a few instances of terrorism against the U.S. They attacked in Spain just before an election. And they are now active in Iraq, which is a far better place for them than here in the U.S., or in England, or anywhere else on Earth. If you believe that this enemy was chosen over money, or oil, or anything else other than because they are terrorists who threaten our freedom and the way of life that we have in the U.S., you are not being objective.

You say, "I am a supporter of our troops, and our veterans, which is more than the current adiministration can say. They shouldn't have been put in harms way in the first place."

Well, H, all I can say about your last comment is that I think you are not seeing things clearly. Troops sometimes must be put in harms way. That's what troops do.

But you are certainly entitled to your opinion, and I appreciate your commenting on my site.

I tried to visit your profile, so that I could visit your site, but couldn't access the profile, hence I can't view your site. If you will furnish me your URL, I'll post it in my list of links, and would ask you to do the same for me. Perhaps we can help each other attract more hits.

Best regards.

JS