August 11, 2005

Celebrating the public square's lesser lights

Regular readers of this blog know I have a taste for offbeat news. Usually this is of the "man bites dog" variety: stupid criminals, unusual natural phenomena, Darwin Award candidates, and so forth. Apart from taking a few jabs at certain unphotogenic presidential candidates last year, I've kept public figures out of the "and now . . . this" category.

There are those, however, whose dimwittery leaves me shaking my head in wonder that anyone would take them seriously. That they manage to get the attention of the press or a major publishing house only compounds my mystification. Therefore, I've decided it's high time to create a new semi-regular feature to highlight very public figures doing or saying very silly things.

And this feature shall be called: The DIM BULB du jour.

Our inaugural Dim Bulb is Cindy Sheehan, mother of slain U. S. soldier Casey Sheehan, who died in Iraq in the spring of 2004.

I have nothing but sympathy for the fact that Ms. Sheehan has lost a son. That is not the issue. Neither are her views of the legitimacy of the War on Terror, because many reasonable people happen to agree with her. What bothers me about this woman is her shrill exploitation of her son's sacrifice for political purposes - not to mention her exploitation by hard-left organizations such as MoveOn.org and Code Pink.

In June 2004, Ms. Sheehan had a meeting with President Bush in Seattle. She described this meeting to her local newspaper as very congenial. Despite her opposition to the war, she said of Mr. Bush, "I now know he's sincere about wanting freedom for the Iraqis. . . . I know he's sorry and feels some pain for our loss. And I know he's a man of faith."

A year later, her story of this meeting has dramatically changed. She now claims that the meeting with Mr. Bush was like a "party," in which he was rude, condescending, and completely lacking compassion. She has become the darling not only of the far left, but the far right (such as The Power Hour, where I first heard her tell the revisionist version of her story). Whoops! I guess she forgot that in this century we have this thing called "print" which keeps a permanent record of things people said a year ago.

Ms. Sheehan is a co-founder of the organization Gold Star Families for Peace, currently holding a protest outside President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas. Amongst her goals we find this abject nonsense:

2) We would like for him to explain this "noble cause" to us and ask him why Jenna and Barbara are not in harm's way, if the cause is so noble.

3) If George is not ready to send the twins, then he should bring our troops home immediately. We will demand a speedy withdrawal.

[Full Text]

Excuse me, but are Barbara and Jenna Bush not in their mid-20s? Doesn't that make them adults? Wouldn't that mean that joining the military is for them to decide, not "George"? And how come no one has figured out this particular factoid, from Michael Moore on down?

In addition to protesting the war, Ms. Sheehan has made other statements having nothing to do with it, for example, protesting Israeli foreign policy, global warming, and electronic voting machines. How does accusing Diebold of vote fraud honour the memory of Casey Sheehan? It doesn't, but it certainly suits the agenda of the moonbats she has chosen to ally herself with.

Today Cindy Sheehan is the cause célèbre of the extreme left and right. But the cracks in her credibility are starting to show, and it won't be long before she is cast aside by these people in favour of the next Big Thing. She receives the first DIM BULB du jour for using the memory of her son to get "face time," and for being used for propaganda purposes by those with more radical agendas.

(H/T: Angry in the Great White North, The Anchoress, and Michelle Malkin, who has received the usual obscene and racist hate mail for her position on this issue.)