As some of you may be aware, I've been writing about John McCain rather critically for some time now. As a result I've grown to expect each new piece to draw one or two e-mails along the lines of "Don't you know he's a HERO, you TRAITOROUS so-and-so!" To which I reply "Yes, but," etc.
But nothing really prepared me for the volume and tenor of outrage when I dared suggest in a family newspaper that published reports disputing McCain's POW heroism were, in my judgment, incorrect. I think the following selection of letters (a few of them edited for length) is illustrative of ... well, something.
John McCain went off to rain death on brown people in an earlier unjustified war. He got caught. In your scrubbed version of truth, that's what heroes do. He smears his opponent with slime and half truths. He baldly encourages the lie that Barack Obama is a terrorist, not a 'real' American, but a traitor. He's reaping the whirlwind of racism and hate in the GOP 'base' he's helped to constuct over his years as amedmber of theat overtly elye and racist party. That's what heros do, eh? You're full of shit, pal.
McCain is a tratorous rat
IT WAS THE BUSH CAMPAIGN IN 2000 WHO REPEATED CALLED MCCAIN A "FAKE HERO" A "TRAITOR" A "FAGGOT" AND MANY OTHER INCREDIBLY VILE THINGS.
WHY NOT WRITE ABOUT THAT?
Please send me the links of the articles you wrote 4 years ago when the Swift-boat assholes were reaming Kerry - who did behavior becoming of a "hero." Please tell me you stood up for Kerry then. [...]
Does being a POW make you a war hero? I think not - obviously it is hella-bad times, but that does not in itself make you a "hero." [...]
I pray you do not breed or vote.
You conclusion does not include important, relevant points of view. From thousands of feet in the air, McCain was dropping bombs and nepalm on human beings who never attacked us. That was cowardly and violent promotion of imperialism, not heroism.
McC is no hero. He lost three planes before getting shot down in Hanoi. With all the practice ejecting, he still did it wrong.
Wrong enough to break both arms and a leg; his severest wounds were self inflicted. If he weren't such a lousy pilot to begin with, he would not have been shot down by WWII era anti aircraft fire. Very few of the 600 POWS were A4 pilots
He ignored sophisticated radar warnings and was shot down. He has fought the release of records of his time in Hanoi and it instructive that none of the other prisoners have endorsed him for President; indeed, several have endorsed Obama and expressed real concern about a McC presidency.
As far as your opinion of his heroism? Real heroes don't call their wives a c*nt (Rolling Stone magazine) a word no gentlemen will utter.
do you feel then that the detainees iwho have been in Guantanamo or rendered ("rendition') to countries more suitable for intense interrogation are heroric and worthy of being considered for the highest office in this land?
Your "rebuttal" did not refute a single criticism of Rolling Stone's accounts of John McCain's non-heroic behavior. Instead you tried to mitigate the circumstances to suit your need to gloss over a real-life jerk. McCain may be good at stand-up comedy, but hero he's not, and has never been.
Real heroes place the well being of others above themselves, and risk their lives in one exemplary manner after another. That's so far removed from the spoiled and angry McCain that one must completely disregard the facts to get from there to your "reason."
In respect to the Vietnam war, history has placed the United States on the wrong side. I have to ask, how can anybody who fought for the United States in that war be deemed a hero?
You claim that McCain's actions, which I consider traitorous, to have been heroic and inspiring but you provide no source for this opinion. What soldiers did you interview who told you that they were inspired by his actions? [...]
One could form a better argument that McCain was not disgraced and dishonorably discharged due to the actions of Viet Nam war protesters such as William Ayers.
I am sure that many decades ago the young John McCain put up an extraordinary show of heroism; however, the McCain who came home ditched his real wife for a trophy girl and it's been downhill ever since. [...] He richly deserves every innuendo, insult and distortion that comes his way. People say that Americans have short memories, but somehow everyone seems to remember the Great Hero McCain, a man who has never actually shown up in politics stateside. I say, lay it on the bum, and with luck we'll be rid of him for good by November 4.