A friend sent the "Different Christmas Poem" email that has been circulating the internet. You can read it in the snopes link below if you are an idiot. This was my response to it.
Nice poem. It would mean more to me if the war we are currently fighting had any actual basis in protecting our country from a threat. However… LCDR Jeff Giles didn’t write it
http://www.snopes.com/holidays/christmas/glurge/different.asp and the soldiers in Iraq are NOT protecting us from any real threat. No WMD’s, no Iraqi’s involved in 9/11, Osama bin Laden is not now, and never was, in Iraq… Not to mention the fact that we don’t seem to be actively looking for him anymore.
And from a purely humanitarian standpoint, while Saddam did apparently kill a lot of people (~600,000), we have now killed quite a few ourselves.
www.iraqbodycount.org/ says it’s around 90,000 at last count. And we have to wonder if we will leave the area (assuming we ever actual leave…) in a more or less stable state. It may just be that when working with a people who are insanely violent due to religious differences, an insane leader is the best possible match.
In fact, when you look at the deaths per day and compare days under Saddam’s rule with deaths during our occupation, the difference is less obvious. Saddam killed about 100 people per day (70-125), since we took over, it’s been about 40 or so per day (16-72). Just for comparison, on the average day in the USA, 119 people die in automobile accidents.
And even if (I say IF) our troops were protecting us from terrorists, the total death toll in the USA from terrorist action is less than 5,000… over ALL time. Less than 3000 in 9/11. Yet 9/11 was used to remove freedoms, change laws, justify torture, and send millions of our boys and girls into harms way.
In the USA, every single year, MORE than 60,000 people die in automobile accidents. Who at Firestone or Ford went to jail for knowingly putting inferior tires on a car with too high a center of gravity? Where was the service man protecting me from them? Where is the light rail line (Trains are THE safest way to travel, although airlines are safer than cars) for me to use going to work?
The point I’m trying to make here is that humans, and especially Americans, use emotion, rather than logic and statistics, to make decisions and justify actions. This poem, although lovely, plays to that fatal flaw. My logic and numbers may strike most as cold, and will never be repeated ad nauseam over the internet the way this poem WILL be, but they have a truth, clarity, and beauty that would better serve the USA.