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Opening Arguments

Flag burning

Yes, please, take down that awful racist flag. No, not the Confederate flag. The other one. You know the one I'm talking about:

 You know that racist flag? The one that supposedly honors history but actually spreads a pernicious myth? And is useful only to venal right-wing politicians who wish to exploit hatred by calling it heritage? It’s past time to pull it down.

Oh, wait. You thought I was referring to the Confederate flag. Actually, I’m talking about the POW/MIA flag.

I told the story in the first chapter of my 2014 book The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan: how Richard Nixon invented the cult of the “POW/MIA” in order to justify the carnage in Vietnam in a way that rendered the United States as its sole victim.

Wow, mistreatment of American POWs is a myth. John McCain was the member of a cult. This is not an Onion article, believe or not, but an actually serious piece in Newskweek. Read the whole thing if you can somach it, but don't expect to find anything resembling a rational argument. This is just a slobbering rant from somebody who can't get over how much he hated the Vietnam war and the country that waged it and wants to drag us back to the past and hate it all the same way he does.

But, alas, par for the course:

 Since late 2007, when Barack Obama overtook Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential campaign, it’s been obvious that anyone or anything can be temporarily weaponized as racist. 

[. . .]

I hope Democrats understand that implications of their scorched earth campaign, which has long since denuded the R-word of the sting it once carried: Ultimately, if everything is potentially racist, then in reality, nothing is.