Thursday, December 07, 2006

What I'm Talking About

[posted by Callimachus]

My own newspaper, which I'm forbidden to link to, ran its star local columnist today writing about a living U.S. soldier for the first time since the war began. That's progress!

Or not. Who was this soldier? Not one of the thousands of local folks in uniform. He was from Hawaii. And he's a deserter. Who discovered his righteous opposition to the Iraq war not when it began, not as it twisted through its convolutions, but apparently only in January 2006, which, coincidentally, was the time he was told his unit would be shipping out to Iraq.

His anti-war mother is touring the nation, speaking to churches and anti-war groups. Our columnist lauded him as a "hero" and demanded "justice" for him. One would think justice for a deserter from a volunteer army in wartime might look a little different than our columnist can imagine.

I have to edit this vicious swill every day. I have to write the "hero" headlines for the column. I have to find comfort in, "Oh, well, at least we finally noticed a soldier by name." Can I be a deserter from journalism?

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