General Commentary (May be military related) email: Kudzuacres1@juno.com

Friday, May 31, 2002
I read at FoxNews that an Army Lieutenant injured in Afghanistan had his medical wire clippers confiscated by airport security. Seems the clippers were to cut the wires holding his jaws together in case of medical emergency and had one inch blades. Although my friend Tim once developed 1000 ways to kill or incapacitate the enemy using only an Army requisition form, I have not been able to come up with a reasonable means of hijacking a plane using nail clippers or ballpoint pens. Actually, the ballpoint pen is easier, but I digress. Could it just be possible that the people in charge of airport security are total idiots. Nah, I don't believe in perfection.

Professor Reynolds set me to thinking about John Walker Lindh and the American soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines on the ground in Afghanistan. We hear that Lindh is a young, misguided kid who is not really responsible for his actions. Yet the Americans who are in the garden spots of the world protecting us and our nation probably joined up at 18 and many are not yet 20, JWH’s age when he was captured. If one of those young men commits a crime against the Afghan people, you can bet that the full authority of the US Military will come down on him and the people defending Lindh will be the first to demand his head.

Is there a double standard here? Damn right, but it seems to be working in favor of the irresponsible. The soldier is expected to meet the high moral standard set by the American people since he represents us all. He expects nothing less from himself or from his leaders and fellow soldiers. On the other hand, the Lindhs of the world are allowed to do as they please and if bad things happen because of their actions, then they need to be bailed out. When you read how Lindh was mistreated by the American military, remember that it was that same military that told the world that Lindh is an American citizen. Also, remember that Lindh is alive to complain. The odds for the American soldier captured by Al Queda should be so good.