Thursday, January 24, 2013

Heroes And Cowards

At The Daily Felltoon, our standing rule on both credit and blame is simple, and hasn't changed since we began five years ago: We'll give credit when it's due, and allot blame when it's been earned.

Lately, many of our colleagues in the media - specifically, the sports media - have been focused on fallen heroes. From Lance Armstrong to Manti Te'o to pretty much all of Major League Baseball - including every media organization and baseball fan [For the record, that's our entire staff too] - the list of so-called heroes that have become an embarrassment has placed a pall over much of the media, with many rhetorically wondering where all the heroes have gone.

The heroes never left. They're just not wearing sports uniforms - and they're surrounded by cowards, unfortunately.

One of our personal heroes this week was in full display yesterday, in both houses of Congress, taking no grief, arrogance, stupidity, or harassment from anyone. That hero is Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who not only smacked down preening Republicans looking to grandstand in front of the TV cameras. She even smacked down those right-wing media propagandists who weren't even at the hearings, who've been lying about the attacks in Bengahzi since they happened last September.

We also have to note the heroism today of our American women who serve in combat roles around the world, many of whom have been doing so without official recognition for years. Today, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta will remedy that, as he makes official a change in Pentagon policy that will officially open up combat roles to women.

It's not that women haven't already been serving in combat roles in warzones over most of the last twenty years. It's that American women haven't been able to capitalize on their bravery and sometimes heroic service, by climbing some of the military's highest ranks, or by being recognized for their service in certain roles in all branches of the U.S. Armed Services.

After today, those heroes will finally be equal in every legal way, to every other U.S. service member.

The heroism of both Sect. Clinton and our female service members stand out in stark contrast to the cowardice of Republicans in the U.S. House. After months of threatening to effectively tell the creditors of the United States to go to hell unless Congressional Democrats gave in to the demands of Republicans, House Republicans were the ones to run away from their responsibilities on the Federal budget, by caving and pushing off the deadline on the debt ceiling until mid-May.

Not surprisingly, the Republican cowards in the House claimed their caving in was a win. Too bad they weren't courageous enough to stand in front of the media to take questions about their surrender.

Maybe the Republicans in the House were attempting to act like other so-called heroes, hiding from the cameras until they could get their own moments with Oprah or Katie Couric - though we don't think that kind of confessional would have helped the Republicans any more than it did other so-called heroes.

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