Well, it's not from this day, but it's worth repeating today, anyway. In an article written last month that's getting a lot of attention in the wake of a Philadelphia Inquirer story written over the weekend, we got a preview of the kind of guilt-by-association animus that was going to be directed at Cindy Sheehan and the Democrats who support her. And that preview came, distressingly enough, from a Democrat.
Writing in the Democratic Leadership Council's Blueprint magazine, Will Marshall, president of the Progressive Policy Institute, suggested that Americans on the left aren't so American at all. Calling on Democrats to balance their criticism of the president's handling of the war with praise for his accomplishments -- "our forces and their allies have toppled one of the world's most odious tyrants; upheld the principle of collective security; liberated a nation of 24 million; made possible Iraq's hopeful experiment in representative self-government; and changed the strategic equation in the Arab-Israeli conflict" -- Marshall said it's time for members of his party to disassociate themselves from those with stronger antiwar views. "Democrats need to be choosier about the political company they keep, distancing themselves from the pacifist and anti-American fringe," Marshall wrote. "And they need to have faith in their fellow citizens: Americans will accept constructive criticism of their country if they know the critic's heart is in the right place."