Summer Soldiers and Sunshine Patriots

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The words are, of course, from Thomas Paine. A true patriot whose voice led the rebellion of America against the British Empire.

Summer Soldiers and Sunshine Patriots.

The words are, of course, from Thomas Paine. A true patriot whose voice led the rebellion of America against the British Empire. A man who wanted the revolution and who risked his life for it. He was a patriot. By his definition, I am not. I find that acceptable. These words, if you are not familiar with them, are included in a work that begins “These are the times that try men’s souls”.

Regardless of the fact that I am a pacifist, I can and do admire him. If Tom Paine sent me an E-mail telling me how the French suck and how the war in Iraq is justified, necessary and important, I would honor it.

But the summer soldiers and sunshine patriots that pound me with their rhetoric about supporting the war just, well, they just piss me off. I wish they would shut up. I find their words offensive. But if Tom Paine did so, I would honor it. What’s the difference? Tom Paine was willing fight. His words, made very public, were an act of treason and he published them knowing that he could be murdered for saying them.

I think that there is only one way in which you can say that you support a war. You go and fight in it, or you are willing to send your sons. If you’re not willing to do this, then I think that this is roughly equivalent to all the other bullshit rhetoric that men say about whom they would beat up or whom they would screw if they only got the chance.

If you think that I am a wimp for saying that I won’t go fight in the war, that’s fine with me. But please understand that if I say that I am unwilling to fight in the war, then I am also saying that I don’t really support it. Therefore, I expect that if you say that you support it, then the next email that I receive from you will be from somewhere in Iraq or Kuwait or somewhere where you are launched and ready to do battle in the war that you support.

I have heard that those who do not support the American government really weaken it and their efforts at war. Really? How does this happen exactly? Is it by the fact that we won’t join the troops? There are many, many more flag wavers that are avoiding going to war then there are protestors. We’re not impeding the progress, they are. Just think of all of the people that could be killed if all of the pro-war people actually followed through on their beliefs and joined the fight. The population of Iraq could be down to zero in no time at all.

I’m opposed to the war and I am allowed to be. That makes me no less of an American citizen and your hollow words of support don’t make you a patriot.

By the way, if your support of the war comes from the fact that you are a Republican during a Republican administration, I would ask you to consider just exactly how much legislative progress you hinder by always supporting “your side” rather than supporting reason and the best ideas. This is little more than mob mentality.

Let me be clear in saying that I am only offended by this language when it comes from men, because men can make a choice. Women, in my book, are allowed to say anything that they want to about the war. This is because girls are pretty and soft and should always be exempted from fighting. That is a man’s job.

So, if you fight the wars, I honor you. If you don’t, then you don’t. There is no middle ground.