Writer: Zealotry flames wars

I’d like to say that I could not disagree more with parts of Michael Roach’s Jan. 11 letter, “The elimination of an Iranian demon,” on the assassination of Qassem Soleimani.

For starters, I’m no “Hollywood leftist,” but a guy who spent six years in the Navy, and I do know that actions have consequences. Also, he is just parroting Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., in claiming that Democrats are “in love with terrorists!” It’s despicable political zealotry that claims those who disagree with an opinion are somehow un-American. Furthermore, I’ve become very disillusioned with most things right wing.

My New Year’s resolution of 2018 was to distance myself from all things theologically and politically conservative precisely because of the intolerance and ridicule that’s so ubiquitous from conservatives.

So far as claims that “the left” is saying things that are untrue? President Trump has, as of Dec. 16, told 15,413 lies as president according to The Washington Post’s Fact Checker. Other reputable sites give a similarly abysmal account of him. Few on the right even try to refute this. I also reject the argument Trump is just a sinner like us all, so we should just accept his impulsive leadership. I would not trust President Trump to walk my neighbor’s dog.

As more facts come out, it is increasingly clear that there was no imminent threat and that assassinating the No. 2 military leader in Iran was likely the most extreme or many options. Great! A bad guy is dead. Did anyone consider that we now live in a world where it’s acceptable to kill leaders we don’t like. That may include our own. World War I started this way.

Finally, the first time I heard “America, Love it or leave it!” was 1972 or thereabouts. I was finishing up my stellar Little League baseball career and teenagers I knew were driving to Washington, D.C., to protest the war. Then, adults my age were telling them to love America or leave it. Many did opt for Canada over the quagmire in Vietnam. We have since discovered that the kids were right and the older people like Roach who carried that mantra were and are feeding us lies. The more things change the more they stay the same. I think the kids are still right, and I’m staying right here.



Return of the draft is a myth

Earlier this month, there was a high volume of Twitter posts alleging that the start of a military draft was imminent.

The Selective Service responded by posting statements on social media that this was false and that the draft could only be resumed by an act of Congress. As if that wasn’t enough, last week a series of fake text messages were received throughout the country informing individuals that they had been selected for the military draft; again, not true!

The Higher Education Act requires men be registered with the Selective Service in order to receive federal student aid. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) provides a quick and easy way to register with the Selective Service; however, recent social media posts allege that by completing the FAFSA form applicants were agreeing to be drafted — completely untrue!

Yes, even though the military draft stopped years ago in 1973, the Selective Service System is still organized and ready to begin operations if and when needed — readiness is important!

Young men turning 18 can also register with the Selective Service online by going to SSS.gov; all young men between the ages of 18 and 26 should be registered.



Editor’s note: The writer is a member of the local Selective Service System board.

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