The heroes the media ignores *UPDATED*

Apropos my earlier post about the media’s obsession with those troops who are mortally or permanently damaged, here’s a story about a warrior who refused to be victimized — a story one can’t even imagine appearing in the MSM.

Truly, I honor and admire all who serve, and I don’t mean to be unsympathetic to those who make ultimate or extreme sacrifices for this country.  I simply resent that the media ignores people who triumph over their enemies and focuses only on those who triumph only over their own injuries (and here’s another example of that).  Both should be celebrated, not just the latter.

And yes, I know that the media’s obsession is both part of its nature (the whole victim thing) and part of its anti-war bias (a warning to all young men and women that war brings only death and destruction). Knowing the root causes of the media’s failure to acknowledge bravery in the field of battle, not just in the recovery room, still gets my goat.

UPDATE:  A bit outdated (from 2007), but a little video about Brad Kasal, the warrior who kept on fighting:

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Comments

  1. says

    Thanks for spreading the word on this, BW.  I would submit that when you deal with the average late teen-20s age group, that there is NO comparison between the huge percentage of that age range that make up the military ranks, and their civilian counterparts in terms of self-reliance, work ethic, and responsibility.  It’s a slap in the face for the media and pop culture to portray veterans as victims.

  2. says

    I’m also an aspirational person, Scott.  I prefer stories that encourage us to aim up, not stories that urge us to be content with a downward trajectory.  Again, I mean no disrespect to those who were wounded just being there (IED explosion injuries are the media’s favorites, because the troops injured that way are largely passive), but there should also be an active element to stories about our troops.

    By the way, I really like your new site, and I’m glad to see you guys back blogging again.

  3. says

    Thanks for the kind words, BW.

    You really have a great cultural point.  Throughout our history, we had cultural heroes.  Those that went above and beyond in many realms of life.  We had people to look up to, pattern ourselves after, and aspire to be.

    No we have, Paris Hilton, the Octomom, and a point the finger elsewhere culture.  There are still heroes out there.  Alot of them.  If only they could receive the attention they deserve.

  4. says

    Heroes make people harder to control, as it allows individuals to believe they can determine their own destiny and fate by using their own power.
     
    A densetsu eiyuu, or legendary hero, motivates people to exceed the limits of the status quo and achieve what has passed into ancient history.
     
    On the other hand, there is a thing called the anti-hero. This was somebody who personified evil yet served the side of good. According to some Zoroastrian stories I have heard, one such entity was the hero of a village. That village would inflict pain and suffering on the hero and for every one inflicted, a sin was removed from the lives of the villagers. Thus an existence of eternal suffering was created as the salvation of the village and then the world. That is an anti-hero, someone who does and is evil or who has evil inflicted upon them, for the good of others.
     
    The Left treats certain people in the military like that, in a way. It’s why they often say that the military victims are “heroes” even though to you it means something different in essence.
     
     

  5. jj says

    The media’s endless concentration on (one aspect) of the obvious is always a source of quiet amusement.  “War brings only death and destruction” being a case in point.  Well, yeah – it does bring death and destruction.  What the hell else is it supposed to do?  We’re talking “war” here, not “walk in the park.”  Death and destruction is pretty much the point, and it isn’t to be entered into lightly.  I don’t off the top of my head remember whether it was Schwarzkopf or Powell who said: “you only have an army for two purposes, to kill people and break things.”  That’s pretty much it, and that’s the way it’s been since David took the field in whenever-it-was BC.  (Or BCE, for the modern scholars.)  I guess it’s good the media figured that out after a mere 3,000 years or so – better than never – but still, come on, boys and girls.

    It isn’t a pleasure. But humanity has always recognized that it happens, and further recognized that those who are willing to do it, and acquit themselves admirably in a good cause, are worthy of admiration.

    I think the difficulty lies in the fact that pretty much everybody seems willing to set themselves up as the arbitors of what constitutes a good cause.  Most who do so in the media have close to zero right to so regard themselves – but they shamelessly do.  This seems to have taken root in the Vietnam era, when the heroism that was just as routine in that war as in any other war was ignored, because it had been decided – by the gloriously self-important Walter Cronkite and his pals – that the cause was no good.  Myself, I never saw our willingness to try to help a people avoid having totalitarianism thrust upon them as being all that poor a cause.  (Though I did have a problem with the half-assed way in which we mostly chose to prosecute that war.  A lesson Powell evidently did learn, when he said in the run-up to Gulf War I, go in with everything you have and flatten them right the hell out, no half-measures and farting around: bring it all and end it fast.) 

    Which we are again not doing.  You can’t simultaneously fight a war and be worried about offending someone.  And there was a time we were not so worrie.  I have to laugh at those pundits who regard WW I and WW II as “good” wars – which really only means that they approve of the causes. The geopolitical reality of both exercises was somewhat different though – what was Kaiser Willy going to do to us?  What could he do to us?  Not come to parties at our embassy in Berlin?  That would be about it, there was nothing existential going on there.  And there wasn’t a hell of a lot more Hitler could have done to America, either.  Fire some shells from a U-boat at Cape Cod?  Nothing existential for us there, either.  (Flatten out Japan, fine – they asked for it, but all Hitler did was send a nasty note and – stupidly – support his ally by declaring war.  Which was truly dumb – but what was he going to do about it beyond that?  There were no circumstances under which he could have threatened us in any way.)

    Vietnam was an offshoot of a genuine existential threat – the Communists spent decades telling us two things about business: (A) they meant it, and (B) they intended to put us out of it.  That, it seems to me, might be worth fighting about.  Yet that was not a “good cause.”  Damned if I know why.  And now we come to another genuine existential threat from whatever kind if Islam you want to pretend it is, “radical,” I guess.  And this turns out not to be a “good cause” either, according to Walter’s mostly worthless descendants, and pretty much one entire political party.

    I assume I’m dense.  I never used to be, I don’t think, but I guess I am.  But smart enough to honor and hold dear those who should be both honored and held dear.  They are the best of us, Whoopi Goldberg, Katy Couric, and Bill Maher et al are not. 

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