Saturday, January 13, 2007

A Bad Day

Friday night CBS showed some choices for a future news story, one of which would be about some women who attend every Arlington National Cemetery Funeral. My throat got kind of tight and I told my wife that I couldn't do that, after just a couple I'd lose my mind. As I went on to tell her that every time I've heard Governor Kulongoski talk about attending the funerals of Oregonians killed in Iraq and Afghanistan I could see it tearing him up, my throat continued to close up and finally my eyes got all wet. I realized that I was crying. No, not the sobbing kind, water running from my eyes kind.

I'm so tired of our young people getting hurt and killed for this President's little Iraq adventure, so tired I'm finally past words and into tears. For god's sake.

My son Nick goes to Oregon National Guard boot camp next week, that weighs on me some, but it is the shared disaster of those harmed by Iraq that is tearing me up. I would have considerably less reaction to me being in their position, I've gotten to have an awful lot of what life has to offer and I'm on the back side of the game. The back side of the game makes it pretty safe to say that, I'm outside the limits of age, but being safe only actually makes me feel worse about it. I'd make the trade to keep one kid from being there.

All I can see is more years of this, George W Bush is not going to wake up one morning and say, "oops," Congress is not going to de-fund the troops, what is going to happen is another election and that Inaugural Day is two years away. How many soldier's family and friends tears away is that? How many nightmares, how many broken marriages, how many broken bodies and minds and hearts away is that? A lot of Bad Days.

4 comments:

DA English said...

Chuck,

I hope your son is lucky and doesn't get called up to go overseas. I know that must weigh on you heavily given the fact he's starting in the National Guard.

No family should have to go through the heartache and pain of having their children die in a war. Even worse, it's a war we never should have begun in the first place.

Zak J. said...

The president declares the current conflict to the be the defining struggle our of days...then only asks the families of the 150,000 or so troops in the field to shoulder the burden of the supposed life or death struggle for western civilization.

Given the Bush admin's generally strategy that, when they've bitten off more than they can chew to take another bite, my guess is that the "surge" isn't even about cynical political cover and is instead a prelude to war with Iran. But I am getting the feeling that the rest of the country, even loyal Republicans, are figuring W. out at last.

I wish your family the best, and I hope my optimism is not misplaced that the groundswell of popular opinion my make Congress finally find their nuts and demand an end to this misguided, mismanaged misadventure.

Ed Bickford said...

I too see more bad days coming... My son-in-law is in the Army, a gung-ho recruit preparing for his first deployment to Iraq. It's going to be bad, it only remains to be seen how bad. The "war president" is obviously determined to make it so bad for the troops that we will submit to his will. I pray the Democratic Congress will push back with all their might, because there is no mercy to be had from that madman. The speech announcing his escalation just made me scream at the boob tube. His administration is the only group that has its fate depending on "victory" in Iraq, NOT America.

Chuck Butcher said...

Thanks all. I think that Nick is realistically at least a year out from being "deployable." That's something, but it just doesn't address what's happening to the family and friends of 150,000 troops, and especially the troops.