According to this ABC News headline, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has offered a “right-wing mea culpa” for the report this site played a major role in bringing to public attention. However, journalist Rachel Martin (or perhaps her copy editor) either has a political agenda or they just aren’t all that smart over at ABC. While the title suggests an apology to the right, the article only mentions mentions issues pertaining to veterans. The article doesn’t cover the tens and tens of millions of Americans who may be “mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely.” It doesn’t mention “groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration,” either.
According to the article, it seems that Napolitano’s meeting with the American Legion’s National Commander David Rehbein “seemed to satisfy” those upset with the report. This veteran of eleven years is now doubly insulted.
As a civilian political activist, I’m highly upset that virtually every believer in the principles of small government (this category describes me well) or social conservatism (this doesn’t describe this libertarian so much) has been labeled as a potential terrorist. That Napolitano, Rehbein, Boehner and ABC News seem to be operating in concert to sweep this attack on having a political ideology under the rug is dangerous.
As a veteran, I’m now as upset with Rehbein as I am with those who are only focusing on the veteran’s side of this issue. I took that “support and defend the Constitution of the United States” portion of my oath very damned seriously. Part of the Constitution I swore I’d uphold (and Rehbehn, Napolitano and Boehner should know this general oath even better than I do) is that pesky little First Amendment. In case Napolitano, Rehbein, Boehner and ABC News have forgotten, it allows for freedom of speech, assembly and the right to air grievences against the government.
Military service is an honor, and most veterans I know place their defense of the Constitution and the American people ahead of their own personal desires.
This veteran won’t even hear of an apology to veterans until people who believe in smaller government have first been apologized to.
This veteran won’t even hear of an apology to veterans until people who support the 10th Amendment have first been apologized to.
This veteran won’t even hear of an apology to veterans until anarchists have first been apologized to.
This veteran won’t even hear of an apology to veterans until people who are pro-life people have first been apologized to.
This veteran won’t even hear of an apology to veterans until people who believe in closed-borders have first been apologized to.
I certainly don’t agree with all of these issues, but I would have willingly died to ensure that people had the right to express these views and to mobilize politically to support them.
Unless something additional happened in their conversation which I haven’t seen in the news, Rehbehn has dishonored each of us who has ever worn our nation’s uniform. There is no honor in taking refuge in a photo-op apology while the rights of many American citizens are still being disregarded.
UPDATE: This blog posting seems to have provoked a lot of anger from the left. Since you’re here, you might as well read about why your Messiah should replace Janet Napolitano with Andrew Napolitano, too.