We're not particularly shy about saying what we think to the ever-shrinking group of people who support George W. Bush and the war he started in Iraq. If you've still got a "W 2004" sticker on the back of your SUV, you can expect that we'll engage you in conversation in the parking lot at the grocery store. Maybe it's not such a good idea -- in Kentucky this week, an argument over the war came to a close when one participant shot the other -- but we're always eager to have a "frank exchange" with those who see the war differently than we do.
Well, almost always. By our way of thinking, families who have lost a loved one in Iraq get a free pass to think whatever they want to think about the war. If getting through their grief requires them to believe that Iraq had WMD or that Saddam Hussein had something to do with 9/11 or that the war will spread democracy through the Middle East or that fighting "the enemy" there means we don't have to fight it here or whatever new story the president is peddling this week -- well, whatever. They've paid the price of admission to think whatever it is that lets them sleep at night, and we wouldn't presume to tell them why we're right and they're wrong.
Is it too much to ask for a similar courtesy from our friends on the right?
Apparently so. Cindy Sheehan's 24-year-old son, Casey, was killed in Baghdad's Sadr City last April, and now she's making a scene down in Crawford, Texas, as she tries to talk with the president about the war. We say she's entitled, and we're pretty sure we'd say that no matter what she was saying about the war. But Bill O'Reilly says Sheehan's behavior "borders on treasonous." And Michelle Malkin, the right's darling blogger and Ann Coulter wannabe, is complaining that Sheehan has made a "public circus" out of her "private pain." Appearing on O'Reilly's show, Malkin aimed the lowest of blows at Sheehan: "I cant imagine," she said, "that Casey Sheehan would approve of such behavior."
It seems that everything and everyone are "fair game" when it comes to propping up the president and his war. Well, two can play that game. On a conference call with bloggers this afternoon, Sheehan called O'Reilly's show an obscenity and said she won't "dignify" it with her appearance. And Sheehan said she has a question for Bush: If the war is such a noble cause, is he encouraging his own children to enlist?
It's a question one might put to Malkin, too. You've got two kids, Michelle. Will you be walking them down to the recruiting center when they turn 18? And why wait for them? You can sign yourself up today.