I love a parade, but…

promoted by Rosi

So, the Giants won the Super Bowl, and I hope my friends who are Giants fans enjoyed their parade. I sure enjoyed the parade when the Phillies won the World Series in 2008.

Governor Christie wanted the parade in New Jersey, since that is where the Giants play their home games, but I say lets let New Jersey reap the tax revenues and let New York City pay for the parade, which we cannot afford.

Now, some are calling for a parade to honor the returning veterans of the war in Iraq. I respectfully disagree. While I certainly appreciate the desire to honor the sacrifices of  those who gave so much, a day of jingoistic flag-waving is not the way to do it.

These veterans are coming home physically, mentally, and emotionally injured. They are coming back to a place where job prospects are weak. What they need is access to health care and job opportunities, not a parade.

As long as the war in Afghanistan continues, as long as drone attacks continue to kill innocent civilians and conduct targeted assassinations, including American citizens, as long as saber rattling replaces diplomacy with Iran, Syria and elsewhere, how about we hold off on the parades.

Let's end this state of perpetual war, and then we'll have something to celebrate.

Comments (9)

  1. deciminyan

    Right on, Jeff! Also, instead of having a parade for big men who hit each other in an arena and “earn” megabucks, how about a parade for teachers, cops, and firefighters who face difficult challenges every day, are having their pay and benefits cut, and are constantly denigrated by “our” governor?

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  2. Alex

    Our national priorities are screwed up, to put it bluntly.

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  3. Rosi Efthim

    I don’t think there’s any disconnect between assuring job prospects and taking care of health care (and mental health & PTSD) needs and celebrating their return.

    During the time the Bush White House (shout out to all the Christie buddies!) was ramping the war for oil and private profit in that part of the world, the patriotism was enforced at the pain of public humiliation. Yellow ribbon decals! (made in China).  Automobile flags! (made in China). Freedom isn’t free! (whatever that means). And in the massive PR campaign that was the early Bush White House, people were so encouraged to believe so hard in the “guy you’d want to have a beer with” that we would look less hard at what he was actually doing – the massive profits Halliburton (called something new now) was making at the expense of our soldiers’ health, families, and well-being. To “Support the Troops!” without thinking too hard that if we really did that we’d rethink the war and bring them back to their kids and moms and dads. And we had massive parades after the first Iraq War.

    This time, we live in a smarter country. And if waves of our people are coming home after weary years of stoploss and complete abuse of the National Guard system, I say open up your companies to jobs for them, pull out the stops and the checkbooks to ensure their physical health, provide medical and psychological support for their mental health as they transition from Hell to home.

    And yes – welcome them back with a parade. Mix the peace signs in with the flags. We don’t have any less stake in their homecoming than the unquestioning flag-wavers do. We have more.  

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