Some Tennessee Twitter troll that’s always retweeting to start Twitter trash — Popcorn Chicken, or Popcorn Nugget, or PopCorn Sutton (@PopcornSutton_), whatever — tweeted about the Dixie Chicks yesterday in response to the media hype over their return to the Nashville stage, and it just didn’t sit well with me. Particularly given what we know now about the war in Iraq.
He tweeted that the “Dixie Chicks don’t support the troops and people seem to forget that.”
No, what people are seeing now is how right they were in their vehement opposition to the war in Iraq.
I don’t know how old this Twitter troll is, or how old any of the eager Tennessee Twitter trolls are, but I am a child of the generation of parents that went to war in Vietnam. And what we know about war is it’s messy; can be unnecessary; is a form of state-sponsored human torture; is hell on Earth; and is G-ddamn ugly. I wonder how many children of the war in Iraq will think the same thing? Our grandfathers stormed that beach in Normandy to take down Hitler and take out Japan, and to bring peace throughout the entire globe.They are named America’s greatest Generation for a reason. Because they will never be surpassed. My granddaddy didn’t have to be drafted. Like so many others of that generation, after Pearl Harbor, he knew what he had to do. Like so many young Americans after 9/11, they did the same thing. Only we sent them to die without cause. They willingly signed their lives on the line and they trusted the President when he told them that we were going after the ones responsible for 9/11. As did so many in Congress — and Hillary Clinton is a part of that.
They made the mistake of trusting the then sitting President when he said: “I can’t tell you all of what we know now, but here’s what we do know — we have reason to believe it was Iraq, we have reason to believe it was Saddam. If you give us clearance, and the time — we’ll prove it to you.”
They never did.
Their mistake was giving the President of the United States the benefit of the doubt. We know, as a nation, we will never make that mistake again. Because President Obama hasn’t been given the benefit of the doubt on anything.
After the invasion, after we got there, after we saw American soldiers coming home in body bags daily, and we begin to witness the hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians slaughtered — children, women killed; blown apart — we began asking for the truth: Where are those weapons of mass destruction?
They never materialized.
Shortly after the invasion in Iraq, the UNJUSTIFIED American-waged war in Iraq was becoming widely unpopular — as we begin to witness that we have no business being there — the Dixie Chicks spoke out. And they paid for it. They paid for it in the form of a price you can’t possibly imagine sitting behind your Twitter screen with your Tennessee troll account. It cost all three the careers that they worked so hard for.
They could have backed down. They could have said they were sorry. They could have issued a statement of apology — released by their PR person. They didn’t really even have to mean it, they just had to say it. But they didn’t. And they paid for it.
That’s grace; that’s grit, that Meryl Streep spoke about.
And the Dixie Chicks were right. So if the world, or if America, has come around to the Dixie Chicks, it’s not because they “forgot” that they don’t “support the troops.” It’s because they’ve seen how much Natalie Maines and the Dixie Chicks gave up when she stood up for what she believed, and when her band mates stood behind her. Because it cost them. Dear God, did it cost them.
Don’t ever make the mistake of confusing disdain and opposition for unnecessary war and the unjustified killing of innocent civilians and the unrequired deaths of our soldiers, who are so freely willing to give their lives for our freedom, for the same thing as not supporting our troops. It’s cowardly. It’s unbecoming. And it’s uneducated.
It’s also ironic, to say the least, to see men knock the Dixie Chicks for publicly fighting back because she, Natalie Maines, didn’t want any more deaths of our American Military — by one who didn’t have the guts to join that military himself. Like the Greatest of All-Time, Muhammad Ali, and so many heroes who have gone before, Natalie Maines had the guts and the conviction to stand up for what she believed in — no matter what it cost. And so did Martie and Emily. THAT’S standing behind our troops. And our troops deserve somebody that will fight for the sovereignty of their lives even when it’s unpopular.
Our men and women in uniform are not numbers. And they sure as hell aren’t ‘boots on the ground.’ They aren’t casualties of war. They are sons and daughters, mothers and fathers. They are not political props to be sent to give their lives for some war that is not ours, that will never make us any more secure as a nation. Particularly when they don’t belong there in the first damn place. Their lives should be taken with the same regard we would take those of the ones that we love. And I cannot stand quietly by and watch some coward on Twitter or some Republican politicians — who has no idea the definition of sacrifice,
or the price some have paid to stand up for their convictions or to defend our lives — talking about “boots on the ground” and wanting to leave more children without mothers and fathers to invade Syria in a war that we did not start, that we cannot end, and that will not make us any more safe.
That’s patriotism, and that is support for our troops, sir.
With the highest regard and love for those who defend our freedoms daily, as well as my right to tell some man that he’s a spineless talking twit — thank you, American Military.
And thank you Dixie Chicks.
Now, goooo Vols!
Candi is a lifelong reader, writer, Democrat, and kid keeper. She lives in Middle Tennessee and rants coast to coast.