Monday, June 8, 2009

More On The Soldier And The Doctor

I saw the post linked below at, and wanted to share it with you. Before that, though, let me just say that I have absolutely nothing against Muslims, or Islam. Islam, like most other world religions, gets a bad rap from its more fanatical fringe practitioners. The majority of Muslims are not rabid fundamentalists looking to engage in jihad, just as most Christians are not of the Jerry Falwell or Fred Phelps variety. Obviously, those are the people about whom we hear the most because of their actions. But Islam itself is a peaceful religion, just as Christianity is. You wouldn't know it by some of the "religious faithful," though - both have extremists whose words and actions in no way, shape, or form match the philosophy of their founders.

That being said, there is no doubt that Private William Long, the Army soldier gunned down outside an Army Recruiting Center (along with Private Quinton I. Ezeagwula, who was wounded), was killed for political and religious reasons by a convert to Islam, who studied jihad in Yemen. To deny that, to gloss over that reality because President Obama was getting ready to go give a speech in Egypt to the Muslim community (and you know that is why), is yet another example of the failure of the Fourth Estate to do its job, instead of acting as the PR arm of Obama's Administration. It is revisionist history, to be sure, but one that has consequences, not just in Little Rock, AR, but also for those serving our country who expect, no, who are ENTITLED to, better treatment by their country. It dishonors them, their service, us, and this dishonor is being perpetrated by their Commander in Chief. It is reprehensible.

And so, with the caveat above, here is a link to a post from Atlas Shrugs regarding an event at a Remembrance Rally for the fallen Pvt. Long. One of the points made at the other post was the lack of coverage of this event compared to the protesters at Dr. Tiller's funeral. At least that seemed to garner some national media attention.

I hasten to say, though, I think it is inappropriate for protesters to be at ANYone's funeral, whether it be Dr. Tiller's by Operation Rescue-type people, or at Pvt. Long's by those who think the US is "The Great Satan," or whatever. Some of you may know that Fred Phelps' gang, um, I mean, "church," often stages protests at the funerals of military personnel (you know, supporting a country that supports LGBT people), and at the funerals of gay people (like Matthew Shepard, for example). If you have not seen any comments made by this group, this should give you an idea:
"The first sin was being a part of this military. If this young man had a clue and any fear of God, he would have run, and not walked, from this military," said protester Shirley Phelps-Roper. "Who would serve a nation that is godless and has flipped off, defiantly defied, defiantly flipped off, the Lord their God?"

And this:
One protester had an American flag tied to his belt that draped to the ground. He was holding a sign that read, "Thank God For IEDs," which are explosive devices used by insurgents to blow up military convoys.

It only goes down hill from there.

Ironically, there are often veterans there to counter the Phelps' people, but they know that this is a free country, which means they have to listen to this crap and not lash out in kind.

Oops - sorry for the digression. The point (I'm getting there!) is two-fold: first, the lack of coverage relating to this violent attack by someone who has a HISTORY of violence and "fun with guns" (ahem), who attacked members of our military motivated by religion and politics continues to upset me. There should be more outrage about this, if you ask me, and more concern, especially since Muhammad seems to have larger connections. Maybe the FBI should have been keeping a closer eye on him.

Second, protesting at a memorial remembrance, or anything like that, is inappropriate, in my opinion that is. People are grieving the loss of their loved ones, and especially when they have been taken by violent means, to then have to deal with protesters is just cruel. I am ALL for free speech, a right sacred to us in a democracy, one in which I engage in regularly, and through protests. It is a right that the veterans mentioned as being why they tolerate the hateful comments made at funerals of soldiers by the Phelps "church." It is why the videographer at the Rally said over and over, "Can you do this in Saudi Arabia?" (as in, can a woman stand on a street in Saudi Arabia and say whatever she wants? I kinda doubt it.).

But I also believe there is a time and place for such protests, and at someone's funeral, or even their memorial rally, flies in the face of decency and decorum. That concept seems to be sorely lacking these days, but it wouldn't hurt to get back to it, and I hope we do. Any ol' day now...

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