PAT TILLMAN'S BROTHER ON THE EVE OF THE MIDTERM ELECTIONS (WHICH IS PAT'S BIRTHDAY)
Kevin Tillman, Pat Tillman's brother, who enlisted in the Army with him after 9/11 and fought in Afghanistan and Iraq but unlike Pat, survived, has written the most moving, eloquent reflection on what he has observed and learned since he and Pat joined up. You must read the whole thing. These excerpts do not do the narrative justice.
It is Pat’s birthday on November 6, and elections are the day after. It gets me thinking about a conversation I had with Pat before we joined the military. He spoke about the risks with signing the papers. How once we committed, we were at the mercy of the American leadership and the American people. How we could be thrown in a direction not of our volition. How fighting as a soldier would leave us without a voice… until we get out.
Much has happened since we handed over our voice:
Somehow American leadership managed to create a more dangerous world.
Somehow a narrative is more important than reality.
Somehow America has become a country that projects everything that it is not and condemns everything that it is.
Somehow the most reasonable, trusted and respected country in the world has become one of the most irrational, belligerent, feared, and distrusted countries in the world.
Somehow being politically informed, diligent, and skeptical has been replaced by apathy through active ignorance.
Somehow the same incompetent, narcissistic, virtueless, vacuous, malicious criminals are still in charge of this country.
Somehow this is tolerated.
Somehow nobody is accountable for this.
In a democracy, the policy of the leaders is the policy of the people. So don’t be shocked when our grandkids bury much of this generation as traitors to the nation, to the world and to humanity. Most likely, they will come to know that “somehow” was nurtured by fear, insecurity and indifference, leaving the country vulnerable to unchecked, unchallenged parasites.
Luckily this country is still a democracy. People still have a voice. People still can take action. It can start after Pat’s birthday.
I think it's clear what Kevin is saying. He's saying that those responsible for this debacle, for turning our beloved nation from a beacon of light to the world into a heart of darkness must be boldly rejected, voted out of office, and held accountable for their ill-considered strategies and their disastrous consequences. Their lies, their thirst for power and their venality have betrayed the two centuries-old values that are the foundation of the "great American experiment."
We vote again the day after Pat Tillman's birthday. We will honor him with a vote against those who dishonored his noble intentions with their ignoble actions, and diminishing their power to continue to pervert this great nation.
Tags: Kevin, Pat Tillman, Iraq war