I guess HuckaJesus thinks that the best way to honor our troops over this Memorial Day weekend was to make sure he threw in a little bit of right-wing scandal-mongering and attacking that uppity president of ours for heaven forbid having a Marine hold an umbrella over his head during at press conference with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan, along with the revival of Benghazi-gate while giving a tribute to those "real heroes" of ours who aren't being taken care of properly at the V.A.
I'd be willing to take Huckabee's feigned concern for our troops that he expressed here a bit more seriously if he and his fellow Republicans were not doing their best to either make excuses for the Bush administration invading Iraq and Afghanistan while refusing to pay for their wars, and passing tax cuts instead, and if they weren't still pushing for our country to be involved in more military conflicts to this day.
Huckabee and his party of austerity that doesn't want to see the richest among us have their taxes raised one penny don't have a leg to stand on when it comes to criticizing anyone about how our troops are taken care of. We've got some huge problems with the V.A. but President Obama is not the one that created the mess where the outdated system was overloaded. He's the one who inherited the mess that George W. Bush helped to create. Now people like Huckabee are bitching that he hasn't fixed it quickly enough.
I'm not happy it hasn't been fixed either, but unless you've got some more constructive criticism about how to fix it, other than bringing up Umbrella-gate, or this fake Benghazi outrage we've been seeing from the right for months on end now, you need to either shut the hell up or decide to actually do something to make the situation better.
If Huckabee or anyone in the media actually cares about this issue, they should be doing things like bringing in computer experts to look at the system we have now, the systems being considered by the V.A., asking questions about the man hours to get the paper records converted and what the most efficient way to do that would be. And if it looked like the V.A. is not going to be using the most up to date technology and most efficient way to fix this mess, ask, "Why not?"
Mike Huckabee doesn't care about that. He cares about blowing the dog-whistles for the far right of his party that we heard here. What's really telling about the mentality of the people who actually take this guy seriously, is the loudest applause from his audience was when he was talking about President Obama and the umbrella being held up for him: Huckabee: Honoring America's Real Heroes:
HUCKABEE: So the president's Rose Garden press conference with the prime minister of Turkey couple of weeks ago was interrupted by some raindrops. The president called on a couple of U.S. Marines to hold an umbrella over them.
I am sure the Marines were willing and ready to do whatever the commander in chief requested, but I couldn't help but cringe at the command for Marines to keep the president dry.
Look, it’s true the president’s been rained on over a growing series of scandals. But instead of the president calling in the Marines to protect him from rain, I wish he’d called them in to protect our ambassador in Benghazi.
And as for the umbrella, there was something unseemly about having Marines hold an umbrella – a task easily assigned to any White House flack. In fact, it might have been a great opportunity for the president to simply request the umbrella and hold it himself.
Our military is called upon to risk their lives for us and many do just that. They are called upon to take on the toughest task that even exists on this planet. And it would appear that sometimes the most menial tasks are kind of beneath their training as warriors.
Yet sadly, many of these heroes who come home face another enemy: the demons of post-traumatic stress disorder and a federal bureaucracy that makes our veterans wait to get treated.
There are 22 suicides a day among veterans and it is time we put this issue front and center. I recently had the incredible privilege of serving as emcee of an event to honor recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor. Of the 80 living Medal of Honor recipients, 12 of them were at the event.
I got to tell you, I stand in awe of these living and true American heroes. Ordinary men called upon to do extraordinary things. Putting their lives in the path of bullets and bombs in order to save others. Their gallantry is the stuff of which movies are made. Yet, few Americans could even name one Medal of Honor recipient.
We live in a culture of celebrities. Sports celebrities, music celebrities, movie celebrities, even political celebrities. And there are some people who are famous for just being famous. But while celebrities might sell tickets and CD's and sign autographs and pose for photos, being a celebrity isn’t being a hero.
Heroes aren't necessarily famous, but I sure wish they were. I wish the real American heroes who have received the Congressional Medal of Honor were famous and that every kid in this entire country knew their names and had posters of them on their wall.
I wish we put supreme value on the unselfish people who risk their lives for the rest us of, instead of just people who simply entertain us. Don't get me wrong. Look, I don't begrudge the people who entertain us. I just don’t believe they’re heroes.
Those who serve in uniform, those are heroes. And on this Memorial Day weekend, I hope you take a moment to get on your knees, close your eyes and say a prayer of thanks for those whose names you may not know, but whose actions gave you freedom. And yes, they are heroes.
I hate to break it to Huckabee, but President Obama wasn't the only one with the members of the service holding an umbrella over their heads as illustrated here:
I guess Huckabee isn't too worried about that commandment that says you're not supposed to lie. For more on the the right-wing going nuts over "umbrella-gate" here's Sam Seder and his commentary on it shortly after it happened:
More like this
- Nicole Sandler - Radio or Not
- Glenn Greenwald
- Kung Fu Monkey
- Lawyers, Guns & Money
- Southern Beale
- Liberal Catnip
- Juan Cole/Informed Comment
- Suburban Guerrilla
- Vagabond Scholar
- echidne of the snakes