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Arizona Daily Wildcat
Tuesday March 25, 2003

Americans should Ītake a cue from the British parliament'

This past week, while many Wildcats spent their time drinking on beaches or partying in Vegas, I spent my spring break with my best friend, comforting her on the loss of her boyfriend, Marine Corps Captain Ryan Beaupre. This made me all the more disgusted to return to a school filled with anti-war protesters, with their signs shouting at me that I'm ignoring the fact that people are dying. Am I? Was I ignoring it when I looked around and saw one of these very faces staring back at me in smiling pictures, and in my memories?

After a weekend of crying and asking why, I still do not oppose the war. I want to support our president and our troops. In Monday's Wildcat Forum, Mr. Bryan wrote that we need to save our troops from President Bush. Save them from their jobs, Mr. Bryan? I can assure you that these men and women did not enlist to sit at home and never see combat, and never have a chance to fight for their country and for the rights of people around the world. These men and women are over in Kuwait or Iraq or stationed around the world to fight for one purpose, the United States of America and all of her people.

How do you think they feel when they're working on the front lines, and the only reports they hear are the rioting and the anti-war protests around the globe? These soldiers need our support, not our condemnation of their commander or of their fight.

The people of the United States need to take a cue from British Parliament. The liberal section of British Parliament, after putting to a vote an official condemnation of the war in Iraq, was defeated by a two-thirds margin. What they did after is much more astounding. The leader of the rebel party stood up in front of his country and stated that his party had expressed their views, and now it was time for the entire country to unite behind their soldiers and their leader. He had the honor and humility to recognize when it was time to stop fighting and back the men and women who are risking their lives for their country. The troops need support from their countrymen more than they need someone to tell them they are wrong. Now if only we would do the same ·

Kelly Haverland
sociology senior

Dixie Chicks treated unfairly for voicing opinions on war

Ah, what strange times we live in. Just as the latest song on the radio gets the let's-play-it-20-times-an-hour treatment (in this case, the Dixie Chicks' rendition of "Landslide") it disappears completely from the airwaves. This seems to be due in part to the recent comments made by lead singer and Texas native Natalie Maines concerning George Bush. After a show in London, Maines said of Bush's military stance on Iraq, "Just so you know, we're ashamed the President of the United States is from Texas." The result was radio stations banning the Dixie Chicks' music on a level that reminisces of when the Beatles were banned for their "more popular than Jesus" comment.

Despite a public apology, the South Carolina House of Representatives has deemed the matter important enough to pass a 50-35 resolution calling for the Chicks to perform a concert for troops. What I don't understand is why any state legislature has suddenly taken an interest in the anti-war stance many musicians have already made clear. Secondly, why are the Dixie Chicks being punished for exercising their right to free speech? Shouldn't any American citizen be allowed to voice their own opinion without repercussions? Apparently this luxury doesn't apply to country music, a genre that seems to have a large percentage of pro-patriotism ballads such as Alan Jackson's "Where Were You when the World Stops Turning" to that Toby Keith song that involves the terrorists getting a boot in the ass.

In a similarly asinine move, two Republicans in the House of Representatives have successfully earned their pay by renaming the French fries and the French toast in the House cafeteria to freedom fries and freedom toast, respectively. That'll teach the French to oppose war. I'm sure that in this time of crisis, Congress will have time to introduce freedom bread, freedom kissing, and the freedom horn to the nation. No telling if Germany will get the same treatment with freedom chocolate cake and freedom measles.

I believe that it was Mark Twain that said, "Suppose you were an idiot · And suppose you were a member of Congress · But I repeat myself."

Nick Smith
pre-business sophomore

Clinton's actions similar to Bush's, but without protests

Ho hum, another protest. Don't get me wrong, I've always been opposed to the concept of playing the world's policeman, spending U.S. resources and U.S. lives always trying to solve everybody else's problems when we've got more than enough of our own ÷ and I'm certainly no ditto-head Republican fan of G.W. Bush. But I'm definitely amused by the hypocrisy of "opportunist-peaceniks" who are only opposed to military adventurism when it helps them advance their own political party's agenda.

Why didn't I see such wholesale protest when Bill Clinton was sending U.S. troops to fight and die in open-ended "enforcement" missions in Somalia and Bosnia under far more tenuous rationalization? Where were these people when, spouting unsubstantiated claims of "ties to terrorism," Clinton ordered the unprovoked bombing of random Middle Eastern civilian targets "in our name" ÷ to draw attention away from his various presidential scandals du jour? As I recall, he didn't even bother to present justification to the United Nations for his actions, much less petition for any type of official sanction. I guess just like perjury, sexual harassment, and rape, war is only immoral when engaged in by a Republican.

Scott Benjamin
optical sciences senior staff technician

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