Gnash, Rinse, Repeat
The right-wing has spent the last few weeks gnashing and grinding their teeth to the gum line, trying hard to compare the Afghan evacuation to Ho Chi Minh City, (Saigon). President Biden extricated America from a black hole of war that sucked the very lives, resources, and emotions out of all Americans. Any withdrawal from a 20-year war zone was going to look confusing and give the appearance of chaos. The media loved showing the public video of desperate Afghans clinging to an ascending plane, risking their lives, like it was an episode of Wipeout. The more than one hundred thousand that were airlifted without a hitch—was not a story, just a footnote.
The dirty water rinse of outdated and ridiculous conservative commentary reach its’ zenith this week when a defeated monument to white supremacy praised the so-called military accomplishments of a dead one. Donald Trump, this week, warmed up his shtick for his debut as a fight commentator on 9/11. In a bizarro display of logic, Trump told Americans that if defeated Confederate War General Robert E. Lee was leading the war effort in Afghanistan the outcome would have been different: if we had Robert E. Lee leading our troops in Afghanistan, then “that disaster would have ended in a complete and total victory many years ago,” said the former President.
Last evening, President Joe Biden continued his acts of political bravery, instructing the federal government to mandate vaccines for its’ employees and encouraged private businesses to follow his lead. He pointedly told the people who resort to violence, rather than help, to knock it off. Biden, obviously annoyed, set down six markers as to how America can finally awaken from our Covid- 19 nightmare; that at first was unavoidable, but is now manageable with cooperation. What anti-vaxxers and anti-masks wearers are really complaining about is not freedom but their inconvenience; It cuts into my skin, I can’t breathe, this looks ridiculous, and you are taking away my freedom. Those excuses are not about the current masks debate but from anti-seatbelt conversations, dating back to 1968.
In the past, I have heard my own relatives lament how they could no longer pollute an enclosed restaurant with cigarette smoke after dinner while nursing a cocktail. Many thought they needed to fill an airplane cabin with smoke because they needed to relax during the flight. The same logic stands for the transmission of the Covid-19 virus. One does not have the right to fill a room, me or my children occupy, with a deadly virus… because…FREEDOM! Every freedom has a limit, crying fire in a crowded theater, or owning a fully automatic machine gun. You cannot drive sixty miles an hour in a school zone because we owe each other, as citizens, a safe environment.
It is so discouraging to see raging moms condemn people, who disagree with her, to hell because her little Mimsy has to wear a mask. Or health officials running to their cars from school board meetings, avoiding violent confrontation because they were nervy enough to try and save lives. Conservatives have latched onto the word freedom to manipulate their political base. Republicans and Blue Dog Democrats are fighting the spending bill for infrastructure, saying what about our children’s financial future, but it will not matter if they are dead. No one has lost their freedoms, just the ability to show your pearly white smile. Let us repeat our victories over polio, tetanus, and rubella; get the vaccine. A small sacrifice to save our children's lives; or am I wrong?
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