Blue Fridays?

I've about had it with the right-wing attempt to label anyone opposed to our invasion and occupation of Iraq as un-patriotic.

I received an e-mail the other day linking support for our troops - along with loyalty to God, our country and home - with wearing red on Fridays in an effort to show you support our troops.

Gee, do you suppose the choice of red (think red states during an election) was a coincidence?

The e-mail I received is sprinkled with words like dignity, class, prayer and love of country, implying that if you're opposed to our presence in Iraq you don't support our troops, let alone have the attributes of dignity, class or love of country.

I'm tired of the Republican Right linking everything from patriotism to being a good parent with this debacle the Bush administration began and seems to have no clue how to resolve.

The vast majority of us do love our country and, the invasion of Iraq notwithstanding, are proud of this nation's many accomplish-ments, both in peace and in times of war.

There is absolutely no more connection between opposition to Bush's war, support for our troops and patriotism than there is between Pat Robertson and Hurricane Katrina.

The e-mail also invokes the time-worn and tattered "silent majority," claiming that those who support the war have been silent long enough. What a bunch of hogwash. Every poll is now in accord that a majority of Americans believe it was a mistake to invade Iraq in the first place, and that the highest priority now - and the preeminent way to show support for our troops - is to get them the hell out of Iraq before hundreds and thousands more troops lose their lives.

I will say one thing, and perhaps we can start our own little campaign: the idea of wearing a color on each Friday is a good one. But I'm going to wear blue to indicate my support for the troops as well as my opposition to this pig-headed regime in D.C., and to signal my demand that our elected repre-sentatives bring our men and women home immediately, if not sooner.

I do not want one more American to die in that country. That is how I support our troops - not by following a president who can only keep mumbling "stay the course" as the country of Iraq descends into chaos and planeloads of coffins return to our soil.

There is a silent majority, but it's not the vocal right wing of the Republican Party, which has tried to muffle protest, gag the press and control both the pictures and the information made available to the public in an effort to sanitize a litany of failures in Iraq and elsewhere around the world.

Iraq, although a mess of our own making, will never be resolved while we have troops on the ground. It should have been an international plan to begin with - and certainly must be an international solution now.

Let's all think about wearing blue every Friday to say to our leaders that we want our troops out of Iraq.

I can't think of a better way to say we love our country and our men and women in the military than by trying to save their lives.

Mike Davis lives in Magnolia. Write him c/o

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