The single political issue that I care most about—the only one that really even exists—is out-group vilification. It is what allows us to have some people starve to death while others have dozens of servants waiting upon their every need. It is what allows us to deny healthcare for tens of millions in the name of theoretical concerns like liberty and choice. And most of all, it is what allows us to kill other people.
Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks put together the video below that calls attention to the many children who have been killed in our drone strikes. I’ve been in horrible conversations even quite recently with people claiming that our drone strikes are right and proper. Normally, politicians will say that they are unfortunate and unavoidable casualties. But most regular people either don’t think of it at all, or think that the people in Afghanistan hate us and therefore deserve to be killed. They should have loved their kids more by loving America.
The contrast now with this killing and the children killed at Sandy Hook last week is stark. In the defense of some conservatives, I’ve heard the same arguments. I’ve heard people say that these mass shootings are the price we pay for the 2nd Amendment. But mostly, this is not what people say about mass murder in the United States. So there is a disconnect. It is unacceptable that our children are murdered. And that’s absolutely true. But somehow it is acceptable to kill their children because it could be maybe that—if the moon is in the seventh house and Jupiter aligns with Mars—those kids were near a terrorist.
This is hard to watch, but not because it is graphic. It is hard to watch because it is true.
I get a lot of grief from people when I talk this way. The idea is that I am anti-American just because I don’t think that an American life is worth more than than Afghani life. Somehow, nationalism is a good thing, despite all of the lessons we supposedly learned from the 20th century.
Just to make myself feel better: