Pity the Poor Soldier


  • Pity the poor soldier, he needs your support. Killing and maiming are difficult sport. It is not enough that you tithe to his creed. It is not enough that your labor provides for his every need. Throw him a parade! Do it in red, white, and blue. Praise his exploits! Shout it out loud! Ease his insecurity. That's what the soldier needs you to do.

    Please nurse's aid, who spends all your days in the rest home cleaning up our grandmothers' feces, please take some time and write a letter to the soldier. Tell him how thankful you are that he is serving you. Take some of your seven dollars an hour and buy him a small gift. Bombing civilians and destroying their homes can make the soldier feel bad. It hurts to see a dead little girl in her weeping father's arms; her blood splattered all their faces. Please, nurse's aid, show the soldier some support. Make him feel better.

    Mr. garbage man, who with your hands takes our spoiled food from our fly-laden, maggot-infested trash cans, puts it in your truck, and carries it somewhere we can't smell it's fetid stench, please thank the soldier for serving you. We know your hands are raw and your back is sore, but please, on your day off, go to a rally to support him. Invading a foreign land and shooting a 'hostile' 13-year-old boy in the face, a boy whose father was beheaded by an American 50 caliber machine gun, well, that might make the soldier cry. Please Mr. Garbage Man, please attend a rally to support the soldier. Let him know you love him.

    Please, you class of 5th graders, we know you are very busy learning about freedom and democracy, about how the West was won and about manifest destiny and Indian reservations, about slavery and the civil war and Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement. Please take some time away from your studies to make some posters telling the soldiers how thankful you are that they are defending their freedom. You see, it can be difficult for the soldiers when they see war protests and riots all over the world, when they have to keep killing the people they are trying to liberate. It can be hard for the soldiers to see almost all the people they are trying to liberate spitting at them, calling them bad names, telling them to go home, hating them and trying to kill them. That can make the soldier very sad. Please make the poor soldier a poster.

    Please mother, we know you are busy breast-feeding and changing diapers and cuddling and cooing and kissing your little baby, but please, set the baby down and call into a TV talk show. Tell the world how proud you are of the soldier. You see, it is very difficult for the soldier to see babies born with hideous deformities due to depleted uranium. It is difficult for him to see sickly, dehydrated mothers with breast milk dried up because water treatment facilities have been bombed out of commission, clutching their wailing, hungry babies. It is difficult for him to see the fathers clawing and grabbing and biting and fighting for a free handout of food to feed their starving babies with bloated bellies ' starving because the invasion has interrupted their food supply. Please mother, set down your baby, call into the TV talk show, and praise the soldier. He needs your support.

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Columns on STR: 12

David Wiggins is a West Point honor graduate and an honors graduate of New York Medical College. He left the Army as a Conscientious Objector, resigning his commission as an Army Captain on the Iraqi front lines during Operation Desert Storm. He is currently an Emergency Physician.  Visit his website at http://davidwiggins.net