I'm continually amazed, and not in a good way, at the cookie cutter, black and white attitudes of my fellow citizens. On any issue there seems to be a black side, a white side and lines drawn that are delineated by whatever pundit one tends to idolize. Sides are stamped out, perimeters are fortified so that nothing can leak through from the outside. There will be no melding of black and white to create gray. That's just not going to happen.
There is a window of opportunity which happens before a person's mind is made up. Once that window closes, any further examination of an issue is nothing more than allowing entrance of that which confirms the decision already made. If you don't believe me, take a good long look at the GOP representatives sitting in Congress. Despite evidence to the contrary they believe they have their feet on the right path. They have their very vocal supporters who affirm that belief through their activism online at Facebook, Twitter or whatever social media they choose to use. I am told they are the minority, however, they seem to be loud and committed to their purpose. The fact that voters reelected President Obama by overwhelming numbers is apparently just a fluke in their minds. That too should prove my point about the window of opportunity and what happens once it's closed. Despite the wide difference in ideology between Conservatives and Progressives, that closed window is also a problem within the Progressive community.
While Conservatives appear to focus on National Defense and keeping Wall Street grifting, Progressives focus on social issues and the subject of injustice. Neither side is overly concerned about Jobs and the economy in any real way, but that seems to be a downside of the closing of that window. Neither side is overly concerned about the 22 veterans a day who are committing suicide. I don't expect Conservatives to care much, I am surprised by the lack of concern on the part of Progressives. Especially the blogging Progressives with their large number of followers and their reach.
Their issue seems to be the due process that was denied (they think) to al-Awlaki and his son when President Obama put him on a "dead or alive" list which resulted in the use of drones which found their target. The issue has again come to the fore over the leak of a white paper which defines in essence how to use drones to kill our enemies. The fact that the man had joined and was actively recruiting for a terrorist organisation would lead me to believe he was an enemy, but without due process according to the intelligentsia, how are we to know for sure?
Sadly, his son also died. I'm inclined to place the responsibility for that on his father, the Progressives aren't. They want it squarely on President Obama for his decision to take out an AMERICAN CITIZEN WITHOUT ACCORDING HIM DUE PROCESS UNDER THE LAW. OMG it could happen to any of us at any time or in any place including our own homes. Call me an Obot, but it seems to me that among the rights and RESPONSIBILITIES of the President is that of keeping the NATION safe from terrorists? When there is evidence that someone hates and is actively working against Americans, does the President gamble that it's not true? See? al-Awlaki had already been arrested and tried in absentia in 2007 for fomenting against the United States and other foreigners. The Yemeni government did that. He spent 18 months in jail and once released apparently didn't show up for his court date which necessitated the in absentia part. Despite the fact that it didn't happen on American soil, would you not call that a part of the due process to which he was entitled? Imagine the screams from the US if al-Awlaki had caused something akin to the 9/11 attacks on our soil?
When it comes to acts of war or terrorism, you pay your money and you take your choices. That's the harsh reality of war. However, when you send men and women off to kill or be killed instead of using drones for the job, you are creating a group of loyal American men and women with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Something our government, until President Obama ordered the VA to address, was unconcerned with.
While Progressives are screaming about the injustice of the lack of due process, and the use of drones, 22 veterans are committing suicide every day. That's almost 1 every hour. Despite the long standing evidence that PTSD exists, the VA and the government that funds the VA did nothing to assure these soldiers that they had access to mental health professionals. Even with the presidential order to increase the number of mental health professionals available to these people, the VA hasn't been able to keep up. With so few professionals available the waiting lists are still, 2 years later, far too long. And the Progressive outcry over the injustice of this is....crickets. And the death toll from it far surpasses the number of deaths caused by drones.