Cue Demi's boyfriend, soldier, because you've been punk'd. "Military men are dumb, stupid animals to be used as pawns for foreign policy," said Henry Kissinger and now, today's grunts are part of this storied American tradition.
In the face of such unambiguous contempt, Americans continue to enlist. But why should this surprise anyone? We grow up watching war movies and playing with guns. We're surrounded by war memorials and war monuments, and are taught to respect and fear those in uniform. We witness the demonizing of those who oppose war. Our media is overrun with militaristic fervor. Our tax dollars finance war and pro-war propaganda. Our government passes laws designed to thwart dissent.
Even if we remain immune to wartime spin and propaganda-even if we don't buy into the story that America has been dragged into conflict after conflict and perpetually left with no choice but to wage a humanitarian war against a savage enemy-we still face the guilt factor of the "support the troops" peer pressure: No matter what we think or how we feel, once the actual fighting begins, all Americans must unite behind our troops to insure their safety through victory. After all, what kind of American turns his or her back on the brave men and women in uniform-the noble men and women putting their lives at risk so we can enjoy our freedoms-the courageous men and women glorified by countless films and video games and toys?
Okay, son, just sign right here and you'll be spreading democracy before you can say: "depleted uranium." Look at them yellow ribbons, son, your country is mighty proud of you.
America...consider yourselves punk'd.
Mickey Z. can be found on the Web at http://www.mickeyz.net.