September 22, 2005

Only The 'Little People' Need To Sacrifice

News like this gives me further evidence for my theory that Leona Helmsley was the avatar of the spirit of the Republican party:

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, President Bush and Republicans in Congress have refused to consider rolling back the $336 billion in new tax cuts that the richest 1 percent are slated to get over the next five years. They say we need to pay for reconstruction not by asking the wealthiest to sacrifice just a little bit, but by massive cuts to spending. And now we see what that means: The Navy Times today reports that those cuts "include trimming military quality-of-life programs, including health care" . . . This, while troops are fighting and dying for our country in Iraq.

. . . The specifics are ugly. They are, for instance, asking troops to "accept reduced health care benefits for their families." Additionally, "the stateside system of elementary and secondary schools for military family members could be closed." In the past, this idea "has faced strong opposition from parents of children attending the schools because public schools [in and around bases] are seen as offering lower-quality education." ...

This is how the Republicans want to thank the men and women who followed their orders to go into Iraq and Afghanistan? This is how they would treat their families who don't get to see them for months at a time?

It must take an unimaginable amount of gall to lie your way into a war, fail to properly equip the people you send to fight it and then cut the few benefits they're offered in return so that Paris Hilton gets to save a little money on her taxes. I can't stand this war, I despise it and the people who got us into it, but the people who went to fight it were with few exceptions doing the honorable thing. I was angry that Bush and his cronies would risk their lives in the most stupid ways, and I'm furious now that they might be denied the few tangible thanks this country offers for their service.

They signed up to defend their country, to be ready to defend all our lives. Their families give up the company of their loved ones and often the geographic stability that most of us take for granted. Many of our troops are coming home from Iraq literally sick from fear and PTSD, even when they've been lucky enough to avoid death or maiming, while their families sit sick with worry. What the hell kind of way is this to treat them?

Our service members deserve everyone's respect, not to be treated with contempt or have their lives carelessly wasted. Goddamn.

Posted by natasha at September 22, 2005 03:34 PM | Economy | TrackBack(2) | Technorati links |