Monday, November 27, 2006

Bob Herbert Nailed It Today

Bob Herbert's While Iraq Burns hits one of my hot buttons -- the fact that most Americans are just too busy with their own lives to really pay much attention to Iraq. And honestly, many don't even seem to give a rat's ass one way or the other. As long as it stays "over there," we're fine "over here."
There is something terribly wrong with this juxtaposition of gleeful Americans with fistfuls of dollars storming the department store barricades and the slaughter by the thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians, including old people, children and babies. The war was started by the U.S., but most Americans feel absolutely no sense of personal responsibility for it.


With no obvious personal stake in the war in Iraq, most Americans are indifferent to its consequences. In an interview last week, Alex Racheotes, a 19-year-old history major at Wesleyan University in Connecticut, said: “I definitely don’t know anyone who would want to fight in Iraq. But beyond that, I get the feeling that most people at school don’t even think about the war. They’re more concerned with what grade they got on yesterday’s test.”

His thoughts were echoed by other students, including John Cafarelli, a 19-year-old sophomore at the University of New Hampshire, who was asked if he had any friends who would be willing to join the Army. “No, definitely not,” he said. “None of my friends even really care about what’s going on in Iraq.”

Something is terribly wrong here when students were far more involved in global affairs back in the late 60s and early 70s than they are in a day and age when the internet provides far more contact with world events and has, in many ways, made the world a much smaller place. I honestly fear for our future if it winds up in the hands of these students who are so detached from reality. And sadly, it will.

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