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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


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    ‘Coward’ theory applies to all conflicts

    It is a sad, sad day when anybody who displays support for the American military or its endeavors may be cursed as a coward. There was a time, believe it or not, when patriotism and political efficacy were looked highly upon.

    Arizona Daily Wildcat columnist Shane Ham illustrated the shift in thought in his April 25 column (“”Attention pro-war students: Uncle Sam wants you””). According to Ham, if you support the war in Iraq, but aren’t actually there, you are a coward. Hmmm … interestingly enough, that paradigm could really be applied both ways.

    If Ham shares the opinion of many of his liberal counterparts, he probably does not look so unfavorably upon American involvement in Afghanistan. It has been called the “”good war”” among other things, in contrast to low public opinion on the Iraq war. Shane, if you do believe in what we are doing as a country in Afghanistan (or other places where our military fights radical Islam), then why are you not there? Doesn’t that make you a coward according to your own military involvement theory?

    Even if you do not agree with an American presence in Afghanistan or numerous other places, I’m sure there are other conflicts you may agree that you may want to go into. How about combating crime here in the U.S.? Police officers risk their lives daily, so unless you have no objection to crime you are a coward for not applying for the police academy (according to you, Shane).

    What do you have to say about ROTC students who cannot be deployed? Are they cowards for their stable status here in the United States?

    Call supporters names, Shane. Do what you will. However, never assume that sitting safely behind your computer unchallenged, free as a bird, your theories do not apply to yourself as well.

    Basically, my point is that it is ridiculous to call anybody who doesn’t share your bandwagon opinion a coward. Is there any conflict you do agree with, Shane? If so, you too are a coward for not fighting it. If not, you are a coward for not taking any side … ever. Enjoy your freedoms and think twice before trivializing support for our military or the military itself. Good day, sir.

    Clayton Strahle political science junior

    No end of fun distractions at the UA

    In all the thick seriousness of impending exams, politics, violent crimes and religious debates, it seems that many are in need of an important reminder: Look at the positives and enjoy life. Sure, bad things happen, and exerting effort to preventing further undesirable events is certainly good, but once we let negative events make us stressed and depressed, we’ve gone too far.

    Just Wednesday, for example, UA’s Alpha Phi sorority organized a philanthropy event for Cardiac Care. Greek Life often gets a bad rap, and only seems to pop up in the news when something unfortunate occurs, yet here was an event that not only raised money for a philanthropy but also brought students together, greek or not.

    This event, the Mr. Greek competition, pitted eight fraternity members against one another to see who the judges liked the most. That’s right: it wasn’t as serious or historically significant as a presidential election – but it was fun.

    The contestants entertained the crowd with dancing, talents, pick-up-lines, improvised answers to awkward questions (such as “”What car would you be?””), talents, a formalwear competition and, for the ladies, a swimwear competition.

    The swimwear part wasn’t exactly my cup of tea, but I still laughed with the rest of the audience when, for example, Kappa Alpha member Spencer Smith pranced onto the stage with a full-body spandex suit and a dancing arsenal of shimmies and pelvic thrusts. Apparently known by his fans as the “”Bronze Angel,”” Smith also won the competition and was crowned Mr. Greek 2007.

    Looking around the Social Sciences lecture hall after the event, it appeared that all spectators came out happier than they came in. So if you ever catch yourself getting bogged down in negativity, bear in mind that Arizona offers countless activities to keep you up and feeling great.

    Dan Greenberg political science freshman

    I’m ready to enlist!

    Shane Ham is exactly right when he accuses conservatives of not putting their money where their mouth is (“”Attention pro-war students: Uncle Sam wants you””). Next fall I planned on transferring back home to the University of Washington, but after reading that article and talking with my parents my plans have changed.

    Giving it a little more thought, a few things are obvious. No. 1, the Huskies don’t have anything on the Wildcats. No. 2, if I support the war vocally, I should support it physically as well.

    Having enlisted earlier today, in about six weeks I will go to basic training and get in shape – which I badly need. Pretty soon I will be a lean, mean fighting machine. I can’t wait. I am doing it for my country, for this university (not for University of Washington) and for Shane Ham!

    Jack Waddington pre-business freshman

    Time for a ‘pro-peace perspective’

    Kudos on the great opinion piece regarding chicken hawks (“”Attention pro-war students: Uncle Sam wants you””). Shane Ham said exactly what needed to be said.

    I am so sick of this bloody, expensive, immoral war, and even sicker of cowardly pro-war kids who can’t put their money where their mouths are. I expect you will receive a few angry responses from these people being called out, but it’s about time a pro-peace perspective comes out into the open. All the best!

    John Smith first-year law student

    The ‘well-heeled’ don’t fight? Of course

    This letter is in response to Shane Ham’s April 25 column (“”Attention pro-war students: Uncle Sam wants you””). Mr. Ham: You obviously understand nothing of conservative principles. As the name suggests, conservatives wish to conserve, to retain the old way of doing things. We revere our inherited institutions and remain vigilant against the leveling schemes of left-wing innovators such as yourself.

    We are especially attached to any practice that helps members of the upper classes avoid armed conflict. During the Civil War, for instance, Southerners who owned 20 or more slaves were exempted from compulsory service in the Confederate Army. More recently, our own President Bush, wishing simultaneously to have his picture taken in uniform while avoiding the inconvenience of traveling to Southeast Asia, served honorably in the Texas Air National Guard.

    Today is no different. We congratulate ourselves for fighting our wars with an all-volunteer military, knowing full well that people from modest backgrounds are more likely to enlist than the well-heeled. Your accusation that people who support the war provided that they are separated from it by the Atlantic Ocean are cowards is an intolerable slander.

    After Sept. 11, President Bush exhorted the people of this country to step up and do their part in the war on terror. Mostly, this involved shopping and traveling on airplanes. Get out on the road someday, Mr. Ham, and you will see people fearlessly driving their Humvees to area merchants and purchasing high-thread-count linens and expensive cuts of meat. The fact that they do this, in unarmored Hummers no less, bespeaks a level of courage that few are likely to attain.

    So before you pass judgment on such a wide swath of people, spend some time among the privileged warriors you so readily malign and learn of a crucial front in the war on terror that is often sadly overshadowed by the endless lists of those who have died in Iraq. When you do, I am certain that you will understand the distance separating one group of young men and women from the other.

    Michael Parker English graduate student

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