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Hoosier Musings on the Road to Emmaus

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Games people play

The Super Bowl is not the only game being played tomorrow, it seems...

U.S. Airman 1st Class Chadwyck S. McDaniel, an engineer serving in Iraq, has won a brief reprieve from the war zone: an all-expense-paid trip to Super Bowl XLII in Glendale and a reunion with his family.

McDaniel, 23, who hails from Oldsmar, Fla., was randomly selected from thousands of servicemen and -women stationed at Camp Speicher in Tikrit, about 100 miles northwest of Baghdad.

Read the rest here.

I don't begrudge the young man a trip home, certainly. And I'm sure the folks who put this together had some good intentions. It will be a wonderful day for him, and and a gift for his loved ones to treasure.

The drawing, created by Phoenix non-profit Packages From Home, is unprecedented in that the military rarely allows troops to return home during their tours of duty...

Just one serviceman from Iraq will get the chance to watch the Super Bowl in person, but his attendance symbolizes the nation's gratitude for those serving in theaters of war...

Symbolic gratitude. Perhaps that's why this brings out the cynical sour grapes in me. Because somehow, this seems to me to be more of a case of looking like we're caring for those who are in harm's way, than actually doing so.

Cranky ol' pastor...


Blogger Young fogey emeritus said...

I don't begrudge the young man a trip home, certainly... Just one serviceman from Iraq...

Cary Grant in Father Goose:

ALL of them, Frank!

And don't send them back.

February 03, 2008 12:01 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting. The article appears to be unaware of 'leave.' Anyway, from my perspective, it would seem the people behind the idea did care and the organization does some nice things.

I would be wary of pulling someone off of Speicher and tossing him into the media spotlight. I probably would have given him a nice car (or other extravagant gift) upon his return instead.

February 03, 2008 12:09 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

On first glance, you'd think I'd be completely in favor of this one, but I share some of Jane's skepticism and caution.

I like what Fogey said... ALL of them. Yeah. One just doesn't quite do it.

I'm not sure that bringing one airman home for a football game in the middle of a conflict says "we support our troops," either. It rather says "we support one troop." Who got picked over others, who didn't get to come home. This could even, potentially, cause a disruption for morale, I'd think. Special treatment of one among many.

I do appreciate the thought, I really do. But when I hold that story up against stories like, oh, this one, I can't help but wonder if there's a better way to support the troops than bringing one home for the SuperBowl.

Anonymous: Right now the Air Force isn't giving leave from Iraq that I have heard of... The Army still is giving two weeks mid-deployment. Not sure about the Marines or Navy.

February 03, 2008 4:50 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw the following text on a bumper sticker a while back:

Support our troops.
Bring 'em home!

February 06, 2008 9:12 AM  

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