Posted by: dolan | October 20, 2006

Supporting Our Troops

“Support Our Troops”. I see it everywhere, on bumper stickers mainly, but on buttons, pins, placards. I’d probably see it even more if we lived outside our blue bubble of San Francisco. But what does this mean, “Support our troops!”? What is it supposed to mean?

I suppose one could just look at it as an innocuous generalized show of faith of the (mostly) young people that are serving overseas. It’s hard to argue with that — who doesn’t feel some debt to the folks who are (in theory, at least) defending our country? What pisses me off is that somehow anyone who opposes the mission of those folks doesn’t support the troops. Therefore, supporting our troops means supporting this insane war we’re levying, and by opposing the war, you can’t simultaneously support our troops. Take it or leave it, black or white, one or the other. Such is the way it is that there’s no middle ground, and indeed that seems to be the whole point of this sloagan: you’re either with us or against us, damn all rational discussion on the subject. It’s the neo-con version of “Baby on board”, the bumper sticker that makes me think, every time I see it, “yeah, because without that bumper sticker I was planning to run into you for the hell of it”.

I think this nation need a few new bumper stickers. One would be “If you’re getting passed on the right, you shouldn’t be driving so far left” (personal pet peeve). Another would be “Why talk when you can drive?” (another pet peeve — yes, the road home yesterday was full of idiots in large SUVs driving 60 in the fast lane with a cell phone glued to their head). But the best one of all would be “Support our troops. Bring them home.”


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