I want to wish Sen. John McCain a swift and speedy recovery from cancer.
But as long as I’m wishing for things, here’s a list of things I’d wish for long before that.
- I wish John McCain hadn’t voted for an illegal and pointless war in 2003. I wish the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and tens of thousands of U.S. soldiers that were killed would have the chance to be alive today.
- I wish John McCain wouldn’t have chosen Sarah Palin as a running mate in 2008. He and he alone bears responsibility for adding such an unprincipled and unqualified hack to his ticket, paving the way for a yet more unprincipled and unqualified hack on another GOP ticket 8 years later.
- I wish John McCain, after returning from the Vietnam war, would have seen that war as the horrible and pointless waste of human potential and life it was. I do not begrudge him his role in that, and appreciate the pain and suffering he endured as a prisoner, but it’s a tragedy that such a man developed into a bitter and ruthless warmonger.
- I wish John McCain would appreciate that multitudes of his country’s people also get cancer, and not only do they not experience the same quality of care as he does as a United States Senator, in many cases they don’t get any care at all- they just suffer and die in the richest country the face of the planet has ever seen. Of those that do get care, some are forced by medical debt into modern peasantry. These are all problems John McCain has voted to make worse in the past.
- Finally, this is a bit petty, but does everyone remember this?
Questioner: I can’t trust Obama. I have read about him, and he’s not, he’s not, he’s a…umm…he’s an Arab. He is not…-no?
McCain: No ma’m. No ma’m… he’s a decent family-man citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues, and that’s what this campaign is all about.
Resist the urge to grade Republicans on a curve; this does not make McCain an enlightened man of courage. This might be a better effort than the racist mouthbreathers who make up the bulk of the GOP, but the correct position- the one in line with the best of American values- is that Arab men can be and almost always are of the “decent family-man citizen” type. The 14th amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the crown jewel of the document in this humble peasant’s opinion, lays this out pretty strongly- Uncle Sam doesn’t care what race you are. And if the questioner was really trying to go the Islamaphobia route, it’s just as true that Uncle Sam doesn’t care what religion you practice.
I’m sure I could think of some other items if I researched for a bit. And if I might anticipate any objections that boil down to “now’s not the time,” I’d just like to say that now is exactly the time. The GOP needs at least 50 of their 52 senators to vote for their shit sandwich of a healthcare bill, so his support for that bill and ability to vote for it are extremely important. Before we all go rushing to call him a hero and a patriot who loves his country, let’s remember that he’s not guiltless in leading us to our present place.