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Proviso Probe

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

cynicism, it's hard to keep up

The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.--George Bernard Shaw

There are a couple items that make good examples from the Forest Park Review.
When my children and I woke up Saturday morning, my 8-year-old daughter was very sad to see that her bicycle had been stolen during the night from our back yard. We then went to the police station to fill out a report. Officer Mike O'Connor was working that day and he listened patiently as another officer took our report. He told my daughter that he was sorry that her bike had been stolen and mentioned that he had recently bought his daughter a new bike, so he offered to give us her old one. We told him what a kind gesture that was but that it wouldn't be necessary.

Imagine our surprise to see that when we returned home, officer O'Connor had already dropped off his daughter's old bike on our front porch. Because of his kind and selfless gesture my daughter did not have to miss one day of bike riding with her friends.

With so many negative stories emanating from the Forest Park Police Department it's comforting to know that people with the good heart and character of officer O'Connor can be found with ease. It's very easy to write a letter or make a phone call to complain, I just thought that equal time should be given to highlight those things that are best as well.

Melissa, Anthony and Zianna Turek
Forest Park

I'm glad O'Connor showed generosity. And unlike many of the cops in the Forest Park PD, I've never anyone say anything bad about O'Connor.

But just because O'Connor is kind and generous in one situation involving children, it does nothing to disprove the thesis that the Forest Park PD is led by two corrupt, dishonest people (Mayor Anthony Calderone and Chief Jim Ryan) whose subordinates commit many incidents of misconduct.

The Forest Park Review (Michelle Keefe) includes a pro-war propaganda piece about children assembling care packages for servicemembers deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Invading Iraq was an awful idea. The project was foisted on the nation by hysteria, lies and conflating the 9/11 attackers with Saddam Hussein. Now the elites who bought the lies and hype say the U.S. military can't leave because it would lead to an even worse situation. Meanwhile, the war profiteers, like Dick Cheney's former company, stuff money in their pockets.

But hey! Forest Park children are learning to be good patriots. So it's OK their older brothers and sisters are getting PTSD, getting maimed and dying in Iraq because people in Forest Park get to feel good about reading about care packages in the local paper.

And the situation in Afghanistan is only slightly better. Japan bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. The Allies defeated Nazi Germany on May 8, 1945. The Japanese surrendered on August 15, 1945. In less than four years the U.S. military and its allies defeated the Wermacht and the military of Imperial Japan.

We're coming up on seven years since the 9/11 attacks and the U.S. military has failed to neutralize the Taliban, defeat a few thousand guys fighting from caves or capture a 6'4" Arab with four wives and a kidney dialysis machine.

But the U.S. military has become a goon squad for a dubiously popular central government. Said goon squad kills a bunch of innocents while doing whatever goon squads have to do to keep the central government in power.

By what measure has invading Afghanistan has worked?
  • Made Americans feel tough or like they were doing something about 9/11 or something
  • Allowed Bush's cronies to begin war profiteering in the bonus round
  • Helped get some pipelines built
  • Created "war spending" that could be diverted to prepping for the Iraq War
  • Increased opium production

But, it's also allowed Forest Parkers to read about their children being inculcated with patriotism in the local paper.

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  • C'mon Carl:

    There's nothing wrong with a post about the wrongs of the nation's involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq, but do you really need to criticize the activities of kids in school? People are not born with knowledge of activities around the world, or of establishing a sense of patriotism.

    I remember in school when we learn about our soldiers stationed around the world. We made care packages at Christmas time and learned a valuable lesson: not about whether it was wrong or right to be fighting in a foreign land, but about people living away from their loved ones because of a job they were proud to have. Did you ever have activities like this when you were young? If so, try to remember what it was like being that young and having an exciting project like this to do that would be sent thousands of miles away to a land you may never be able to see.

    As a teacher, we began correspondence with soldiers in Bosnia. Yes, I explained why the turmoil existed, and why our soldiers were over there, but I did not share my opinion with the students whether or not we should be over there. Instead, I asked the students to think about living in an unfamiliar country and away from friends and family, yet being there because of a responsibility that needed to be fulfilled. The students (grades 6-9) were excited to work on this task, and learned the lesson of thinking about others and being a contributor to a good cause.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion about the war, the election, taxes, school boards, etc. I just think it is in poor taste to insult the actions of school aged children. The Forest Park Review just published a story about the community's children doing something good, which isn't necessarily what sells papers, but makes other people feel good. Don't deny them that right to feel good - just don't read the article.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:03 AM, June 26, 2008  

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