Last Friday night I ran the Extemp prep-room at the Caesar/Cicero debate tournament at North Ridge High. After sending off the last speaker of the first round, I headed to the tab room to scare up some dinner. There, Mr. Hire told me he had heard I was stirring up trouble again. "What? Me?" He said he’d heard I had hung a giant "W STILL THE PRESIDENT" sign right across the hall from Mrs. Seiter’s room. I told him, while I would have if I could have, I hadn’t. He told me Ms Seiter was plotting to get even by handing up a poster that would keep a running tally of the number of U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq next to the W sign. What an "interesting way" to honor the love of those who have laid down their lives for people they didn’t even know. I resolved that if she posted the sign I would post some of my own. Various numbers that would challenge the stupidity of this liberal taunt came to mind: The number of Americans killed on 9/11, the number of Americans killed by terrorist attacks during the Clinton Administration, the number of people murdered by terrorist world wide, the number of Russian killed by Islamic terrorists, the number of women murdered in Afghanistan by the Taliban, the number of men murdered by the Taliban, the number of Israelis killed by terrorists in Israel, the number of Palestinian children convinced to blow themselves up in acts of murder, the number of unborn Americans aborted every year since Roe vs Wade, the number of Americans killed in auto accident, the number of American murdered in America, the number of policemen killed fighting crime, the number of firefighters killed while rescuing people from disaster, the number of Coast Guards men who have died at sea trying to rescue the crews of sinking ships, the number of Iraqis murdered by Saddam Hussain, the number of Kuwaites murdered by Saddam, the number of Serbian civilians killed by US bombing that ended the regime of Melosavic, the number of Iraqis killed during the first Iraq war, the number of Iraqis and Iranians killed during the Iran/Iraq war, the number of Union Soldiers that dies freeing the slaves, the number of patriots that died in the Revolution, the number of our warriors killed in WWI and WWII, Vietnam, Korea, the number of Tibetans murdered by China, the number of Somalis murdered in Darfur, the number of Ivarians by the French, the number of. . .! What conclusions should we draw from these numbers, what would posting them mean.
On Monday afternoon Mr. Hopkins told me the death tally sign was up - the battle was joined. The handwritten poster next to the four by eight foot "W" banner read something like, "1200 + AMERICAN SOLDIERS KILLED TO DATE IN IRAQ AND FOR WHAT?" I printed out four sheets on my computer in large font.
"REASON #1: 0 - THE NUMBER OF AMERICANS MURDERED BY TERRORISTS IN OUR HOMELAND SINCE 9/11!
REASON #2: 25,000,000 -THE NUMBER OF AFGHANS FREED FROM THE MURDERING TERRORIST REGIME OF THE TALIBAN!
REASON #3: 25,000,000 - THE NUMBER OF IRAQIS FREED FROM THE MURDERING TERRORIST REGIME OF SADDAM!
Underneath these pages I placed in even larger print: MORE TO COME!!!
When I returned to check the wall there were poster board tags filled with broad marker letters. Before leaving school for the day I answered each. They went like this: (I don’t have the posters - I quote them only from memory.)
THANK YOU FOR SAVING US FROM SADDAM, WHO WILL SAVE US FROM YOU?
YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE SAVED FROM ME; ALL I WANT TO DO IS TO THINK FREELY. THE SAME PRIVILEGE GIVEN YOU BY AMERICA. IT IS THE RIGHT OF THE PEOPLE OF IRAQ TOO, NOW!
45 MILLION AMERICANS GO TO BED HUNGRY EVERY NIGHT.
250,000,000 AMERICANS GO TO BED EVERY NIGHT FAT!
15% OF AMERICANS LIVE BELOW THE POVERTY LEVEL, WHY DON’T YOU DO SOMETHING TO SAVE THEM?
AND THE POVERTY LEVEL I N AMERICA ALLOWS US TO LIVE BETTER THAN KINGS ANYWHERE ELSE IN THE WORLD OR HISTORY!!!
Poster:(Under my page MORE TO COME)
THAT’S WHAT WE’RE AFRAID OF.
WHAT KIND OF IDEOLOGY FEARS THE TRUTH? THINK ABOUT IT!
I awoke rather early next morning and composed some rhetorical questions to post. I printed them out and taped them together into a long scroll that stretched down three quarters of the wall.
SOME RHETORICAL QUESTIONS:
How much of the U.S. economy’s challenge is related to the unprovoked attack of 9/11?
How many Americans would be out of work if the Bush Tax Cuts had not pulled our country out of the Clinton Recession?
How many people in the world would be hungry if Saddam Hussain controlled the world oil supply? Ask his own people how he shares "oil for food".
How many women would the Taliban have killed in the last two years for wanting to go to school or work or speak their minds?
How many Policemen have died fighting crime in the last two years? Should we give up that battle?
How many Firemen have lost their lives rescuing people from disasters since ‘9/10? Should we give up fighting fires?
50,000 Americans die each year in auto accidents. Shouldn’t we give up driving cars? We could use the gas money for welfare!
Would you like to trade the U.S. economy for that of Russia, Germany, Canada, or France?
How many would have died in Saddam’s torture chambers if he weren’t in jail?
How many suicide terror bombers would Saddam have bought at $25,000 of Oil for Food money each if he were still in power?
Before school started more posters, this time on bright yellow oaktag, had appeared. As I have first period prep, I answered.
WHERE ARE THE WMD’S
I’LL TELL YOU ONE PLACE WERE WMD’S ARE NOT - BEING DEVELOPED BY SADDAM HUSSAIN WITH HELP FROM THE UN OIL FOR FOOD PROGRAM.
WHERE IS OSAMA , MR BUSH?
OSAMA IS HIDING IN A HOLE WERE ALL HE CAN DO IS MAKE VIDEO TAPES IN HOPES OF BOLSTERING DEMOCRAT PRESIDENTIAL ASPIRATIONS.
Poster: (Under my remark about Americans being fat.)
AND THIS IS GOOD?
WELL, AT LEAST WE’RE NOT STARVING.
WHY IS IT IF WE WANT PEACE WE HAVE TO SEND OUR SOLDIERS OUT TO WAR?
ASK CHURCHILL THIS ONE.
THERE WAS NO IRAQI INVOLVEMENT IN 9/11
THERE ARE MANY CONNECTIONS BETWEEN SADDAM AND TERRORISTS, FROM MONEYS GIVEN TO MURDERS, TO MEETINGS BETWEEN AL QADIA OPERATIVES AND SADDAM’S INTELLIGENCE OFFICERS, TO TRAINING CAMPS, TO SAFE HAVENS FOR THE PLANERS OF 9/11.
HITLER DIDN’T BOMB PEARL HARBOR - I GUESS YOU WOULD FAULT ROOSEVELT FOR SENDING TROOPS TO NORTH AFRICA.
THE CLINTON YEARS PRODUCED A SURPLUS IN TAX REVENUE.
CLINTON RODE THE ECONOMIC WAVE OF THE REAGAN REVOLUTION FOR SEVEN YEARS UNTIL IT COLLAPSED UNDER CORRUPTION INSPIRED FROM THE "TOP" AND THE BURSTING OF THE PHONEY E BUSINESS BUBBLE. THE SURPLUS OF THE 1990'S HAD FAR MORE TO DO WITH NEWT GINGRICH’S CONTRACT WITH
AMERICA THAN ANYTHING THAT WENT ON IN THE WHITE HOUSE.
BUSH TAX CUTS TOOK PROGRAMS AWAY FOR THE POOR.
THE TAS CUT RESCUED A FAILING US ECONOMY AND PUT REAL INCOME INTO THE PRIVATE AND PUBLIC SECTORS AND CREATED JOBS.
AMERICA NOW HAS THE HIGHEST DEBT AND WORST ECONOMY IN ITS HISTORY.
AMERICA IS MORE PRODUCTIVE THAN EVER, WITH THE HIGHEST GNP IN OUR HISTORY AND MORE JOBS AVAILABLE TO ITS WORKERS THAN ANYTIME IN HISTORY. IF YOU THINK THIS IS THE WORST ECONOMY EVER, YOU OUGHT TO STUDY THE GREAT DEPRESSION DURING THE ROOSEVELT ADMINISTRATION.
When I returned to the wall at the end of school all the posters, including the tally of American Soldiers killed had been pulled down. Some of my replies were also gone and others damaged and wrinkled as if they had been pulled down them put back up. Posted amidst them one small yellow tag "OK - NOW I’M BORED"
I feel good about the out come of this little clash - I was not bored. I was ready to keep up the argument and I feel my efforts had served an important purpose. I believe that the debate had put the deaths of our precious soldiers in context. My study of the Vietnam War has shown me how powerful anti-war propaganda can be. War is terrible, we must never forget that. The deaths and lives of our heros should be memorialized. But their sacrifice should not be used as a weapon to support the cause of those who would champion the murders who killed them.
Johnny Bounty Application.
2 weeks ago