Call me a cynic (go on, you know you want to) but an ad I saw on Facebook the other day ticked me off.
It was something called “Two for the troops,” selling greeting cards that would come with two of them pre-addressed to soldiers in Afghanistan or Iraq or somewhere.
The group claims to be non-profit, and maybe they are, but things like this bother me because they’re mostly a feel-good way for Americans to pretend they’re doing something meaningful when, really, it’s all just wind.
Sure, a troop in Afghanistan might want a greeting card. But I bet he or she would rather have a ticket home, or better body armor, or better logistical support, or the knowledge that the folks back home are making some actual sacrifice to support them.
Remember, so far, despite costing more than $1 trillion, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have not raised your taxes one cent. Bush had them both “off budget” as emergency expenses so they wouldn’t even show up in the deficit. Under both Bush AND Obama, your taxes have gone down. Yes, down. The wars are being charged to VISA but our men and women in uniform are getting all the frequent flier miles, going back and forth to the war zone.
Want to really support the troops?:
– Skip the cards and donate money to the USO (www.uso.org) which provides help to the troops in the form of entertainment, communications with loved ones, morale support and so on.
– Demand — yes, demand — that your taxes be raised to pay for the war. Our boys and girls can fight better knowing that the folk back home have some real skin in the game. They’ll also feel better knowing they’re coming home to a country that isn’t deeper in debt because of the war.
– Join the military and go off to fight. If more people would join up, our people in the military now wouldn’t have to do so many tours of duty.
– Don’t want to go fight? Hey, who does? Fight to bring our troops home. The war in Afghanistan is rapidly turning into even worse a quagmire than Iraq was.
– If you have one of those “support our troops” magnets, ask yourself: Is it on a car that gets fewer than 20 miles per gallon? If so, buy a smaller car. This war is all about oil, don’t kid yourself.