Do you think she considers how many sons and daughters would have been killed over American and British skies had this plot not been uncovered? Does she care?
Callers to my radio show today ran the gamut over this latest example of terrorist threats. One man made the perfect analogy, comparing the way we teach our children to stand up to the schoolyard bully to the way the United States is leading the world-wide war on terror. “Every culture understands this concept”, he said. “If the bully is left alone, he never goes away. Ned Lamont and many liberal Democrats think if we leave the terrorists alone, they’ll just peacefully mind their own business, never bothering us again.” I thought his point was terrific.
And then there was Amanda.
She was calling from Colorado, and she chastised me for embracing violence as a solution to violence. “You right-wingers love blood and guts and you never have any sympathy for the other side”, she said. “The other side?” I asked. “You mean the terrorists?” She responded with a sneer in her voice: “You just don’t understand. They feel that WE’RE the terrorists. You conservatives are wrong in defining this war as something between good and evil.”
I had just about had enough. “Amanda, let me ask you something”, I said. “Do you consider the 19 hijackers of 9/11 evil?” Long pause. “No, I do not,” she replied. “We should look at ourselves to discover what we did to make them hate us so much. This is all our fault.”
Make no mistake, this woman was serious. I actually told her I hoped she was a comedienne, someone making a prank call to a national radio show. She assured me that she was not. So I had to ask her what she did for a living. Her answer will haunt me for a long, long time: “I’m a schoolteacher.”
This war is so complicated because we are fighting an entity that is all over the world, an enemy with no geographical boundaries. It’s also tough because we all know that it’s a war that will be fought for many, many generations.
But most of all, it’s so difficult because not every one of our enemies are named Ahmed and Muhammad and Abdul.
Some of America’s enemies in this war are named Ned. And Cindy. And Amanda.