Thursday, June 17, 2010

Let us speak once more of our Family Values.

"Tell The Truth and Shame the Devil."

Having to conceal his relationship, Choi explained, contradicted his values, as well as the military values of integrity and honesty. He created a fake female name for his boyfriend in order to talk with other soldiers about his relationship, and he began to struggle to make up excuses about why the people he worked with couldn't meet his significant other. The delicate balancing act proved too much for Choi.

Dan Choi
"It was really when I had to force my boyfriend into the closet -- that was when it got to be too much," Choi said. "That's when I saw it as lying and as absolutely immoral.

"I promised to live under an honor code at West Point that says, 'You will not lie, and you will not tolerate lying,' " Choi said. "It's simple. It doesn't say, 'Straight people cannot lie, but gay people are allowed to lie about their loved ones, so we'll make exceptions for gay people.' I found that to be antithetical to the values that our military was founded on."

Attack the idea, not the person

This week, Elliott Abrams, the former Bush official and noted neoconservative, wrote an essay in the Weekly Standard attacking the Obama administration for not more forcefully defending Israel during the flotilla crisis. Abrams said the White House had joined an anti-Israeli “lynch mob.” Over the course of the article, he used the metaphor six times.
It’s remarkable when you think about it. To Americans with even the slightest degree of racial awareness, “lynch mob” conjures something quite particular: African American men hanging from trees in the post-civil war South. To deploy the metaphor to describe a United Nations resolution that obliquely criticizes Israel is audacious. To deploy it to describe the support for that resolution by America’s first African-American president is downright astonishing. It’s a bit like calling Joe Lieberman’s opposition health-care reform a “pogrom.

Never let your morality ideology sponsorship get in the way of doing the right thing.

Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), the ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, went out on a limb today to do something maybe no other American would think to do: Heapologized to BP for having to put $20 billion into a fund for Gulf spill damages. Only Barton called it a "slush fund" and a "shakedown."
Barton's apology to BP led at first to a delicate dance, as some Republicans tried to move awayfrom the so obviously toxic statements without outright condemning Barton, and later a full court press as Republican leaders publicly calledBarton's comments "wrong."
The leaders reportedly gave him an ultimatum: "Apologize, immediately. Or you will lose your position, immediately."
Eventually, Barton, who would become the energy committee's chairman should the Republicans take the House this fall, said he was sorry. He first apologized if anyone had "misconstrued" his statement, and shortly after apologized for using the word "shakedown" and retracted his original apology (to BP, that is).

I try never to assume the motives of an individual - particularly a political individual - but here I'm forced to wonder aloud, which apology was sincere, and which was extracted under pressure? Having found that the question must be asked, the fact that it IS a good question is really all the answer I need.

A footnote to the above: The 7 Dumbest Things BP Has Said About The Spill -- So Far

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