I sincerely hope this is the most disgusting thing you read
all day ever in your life if you live to be ten thousand years old. It’s a report in the print edition of this morning’s Washington Post by Ed O’Keefe:
SCHAUMBURG, Ill. — No matter what her opponent might think, Tammy Duckworth insists she doesn’t talk much about Iraq anymore.
Duckworth, the Democrat challenging Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.), lost her legs in a 2004 helicopter accident during the Iraq war. She uses both a wheelchair and prosthetic limbs when speaking with voters.
“Most people are familiar” with her injuries, she said in a recent interview. “I don’t talk about what happened in Iraq much, unless people ask.”
Her opponent, Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.), said last month that “all she talks about” are her war injuries.
“Our true heroes, the men and women who served us, it’s the last thing in the world they talk about,” Walsh said.
The comments quickly drew national attention and swift condemnation from veterans groups. Duckworth reaped the political rewards.
“We saw a tenfold increase in Web traffic and volunteers and $50 donations from the whole country, because it really went viral,” Duckworth said. Most of the donations came from fellow veterans.
Duckworth said that if Iraq comes up with voters, it’s because “they ask the ‘Why are you doing this?’ questions.”
“That’s when I tell the story about Iraq and that’s when I say, ‘Look, I should be dead and I’m not,’ ” she said. “And I have that to live up to. I’m not a parent, I’ve not been blessed with kids, so I can’t say I’m doing this for my kids’ futures. I’m doing this because a bunch of heroes saved my life one day and I owe them. It’s hard to explain that to folks who don’t understand the military and the bond you have with your buddies, but I have to do more with my life and live up to that.”
Please, lord, make it stop. Please tell us we’ve finally hit the bottom of what passes for political discourse in this country when a non-veteran has the indecency to comment on the nature of heroism or question the right of a veteran to speak of her experience and her grievous wounds. We can’t sink any lower than this, can we? Oh, wait. Of course we can. Pardon your Madwoman while she bangs her head against the retina display screen of her shiny new Laptop.
I’m doing this because a bunch of heroes saved my life one day and I owe them.
Tammy Duckworth, you are a hero, and we hope you send Joe Walsh and his foul mouth packing come November. He is a disgrace to the office he holds.
Meantime, Mad People with your Laptops, click here to help Tammy win. Congress needs Dems and sheroes, and with Duckworth you get both.
Here’s a linkable piece by Ed O’Keefe on the Walsh/Duckworth race. (Dear WaPo: Please explain the logic of your paywall. I want to bring eyeballs to your dying enterprise, but you make it really hard and utterly baffling. Yours sincerely, The Last WaPo Reader on Earth.)
Also, Dana Milbank points out that this campaign only feels nastier than others because this time around Dems, from the president on down, “are employing the same harsh tactics that have been used against them for so long, with so much success. They have ceased their traditional response of assuming the fetal position when attacked, and Obama’s campaign is giving as good as it gets — and then some.”
He’s right, but I think I’ll spend the rest of the political season paddling quietly away in a Swift Boat to some peaceful land without newspapers, Interwebz, or large-screen teevees.
Yeah, right. Well, I am going to the beach for a week. Catch up with you soon, kids. Keep the faith, and may you too have a chance to step away from the Laptop for a spell and enjoy the last fleeting moments of this scorching summer. Peace out.