Thursday, December 14, 2006

Anti-war demonstrations: why we don't have them

This Slate article provided a sensible and analytic answer to the question about where all the anti-war demonstrations have gone. The biggest piece they missed, and it's quite big, is demographic. We're much, much, older than the society that demonstrated in 1972. I liked the last comment best, and I've excerpted it. The entire piece is brief and well worth reading ...
Why you're not demonstrating against the Iraq war. - By Jacob Weisberg - Slate Magazine:

... Lastly, there is the matter of the Iraq war protests themselves, such as they are. Have you been to one? Demonstrating in the '60s, I gather, was a lot of fun. You went for the politics but stayed for the party—or was it the other way around? Forty years later, antiwar rallies are politically and socially disagreeable. The organizers are inevitably moth-eaten left-wing sectarians, some of whom actually do favor the Iraq insurgents. The sane or rational are quickly routed by the first LaRouchie, anti-Semite, or "Free Mumia" ranter to grab hold of the microphone. The latest in protest music has much the same effect.
Weisberg points out that our mortality rates are much less than in Vietnam, and this reduces the emotional impact of the war (Iraqi casualties, alas, don't count. We are human that way.). I agree, but I wish Weisberg had pointed out that the public has been very uninterested in the number of veterans with traumatic head injuries who will suffer lifelong disabilities. That's a failing of both the media and the US public.

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