The Cult of the Soldier

Note to members of the United States House of Representatives on both sides of aisle: Soliders are people. Some volunteered out of patriotism, some out of economic desperation, some because they couldn’t think of what else to do. Some of them are truly heroic, courageous, conscientious and brave. Some are racist and sadistic. Some are both at different times. Some began as kind-hearted and generous and have had their entire personalities change by the cruelties of war. Can we please, please, please stop pretending that we currently have 160,000 saints with guns patrolling the streets in Iraq? Can we please stop justifying the war in terms of it somehow being waged on the solider’s behalf? Can we please acknowledge that our fetishization of our warriors is due to the fact that an ever-shrinking percentage of the population has been asked to sacrifice a single thing to wage this so-called epic struggle for freedom? Please?

Chris Hayes is the host of All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC.


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