Hey, kids! Lookit here -- the world's first self-fisking newspaper column! It's a real juicy one by Colman McCarthy in today's Washington Post. Now, McCarthy used to be a Post columnist, but that job was a little bit too rough and tumble for his untainted hands. These days, he finds work at the Center for Teaching Peace. But McCarthy was kind enough to take the time out of his busy schedule to throw up on your breakfast table, and so I thought I'd return the favor.
Sure, I know I told you it was a self-fisking model, but you've got to let a pundit have some fun now and then.
Now that asking and telling has ceased to be problematic in military circles, ROTC has resurfaced as a national issue: Will universities such as Harvard, Yale and other Ivy League schools be opened to Reserve Officers' Training Corps since colleges can no longer can argue that the military is biased against gays and therefore not welcome?
Yes, we're going to find out if our Ivy League schools are merely anti-military, or anti-military and hypocritical. I can hardly wait.
McCarthy describes an interview he conducted with Notre Dame's Theodore Hesburgh, concluding thusly:
When I suggested that Notre Dame's hosting of ROTC was a large negative among the school's many positives, Hesburgh disagreed. Notre Dame was a model of patriotism, he said, by training future officers who were churchgoers, who had taken courses in ethics, and who loved God and country. Notre Dame's ROTC program was a way to "Christianize the military," he stated firmly.
So far, so good, I suppose -- although Hesburgh might be shocked at just how many men and women of faith already serve. Even in the Seventies. But I digress, so let's get to McCarthy's point:
I asked if he actually believed there could be a Christian method of slaughtering people in combat, or a Christian way of firebombing cities, or a way to kill civilians in the name of Jesus. Did he think that if enough Notre Dame graduates became soldiers that the military would eventually embrace Christ's teaching of loving one's enemies?
Well. That mask came off rather quickly, didn't it? According to McCarthy, the United States military is all hoo-rah for slaughtering people and firebombing cities and stacking up civilian skulls into mighty pyramids to Jesus. Never minding, of course, that after the American military is done doing all those nasty things, it then prefers to pack up and go home and lets the foreign survivors -- if any! -- go back to running their own countries.
OK, so Germany and Japan were special cases, occupied for years. But since those countries actually invented modern city-smashing and civilian-slaughtering, they were very special cases, indeed. Besides, Germany and Japan became much more civilized -- thanks in no small part to that hootin', hollerin', and killin' American military.
But again I digress. Back to McCarthy:
The interview quickly slid downhill.
You don't say.