Indignation… Righteous or Otherwise

The almighty power of Youtube has delivered unto me the drivel that Greg Gutfeld passes for riveting entertainment, and our predictable responses. But, if you were expecting me to drive a nail through the skull of this useless little excrement, you might be disappointed.

The most predictable thing I could do would be to immediately rail against everything that Gutfeld and his coterie of desperate hacks had to say the other night on Fox News’ “Red Eye.” I mean, that’s what all of you did, right? I saw the hasty and poorly thought out reactions. I’m not saying I blame any of you, it’s a perfectly natural emotional response to something that you don’t like.

It’s cathartic to call Gutfeld all sorts of names. I’m fairly certain that most of them are accurate, and yet calling him names doesn’t serve much of a purpose. Actually, scratch that, it serves a pretty important purpose.

It gives him what he wants.

Silly little midgets like him exist because we let them. Who had actually heard of this guy before his offensive comments about the Canadian military? Yeah, I thought so, neither had I. I bet there are a hell of a lot more of you out there who have now, aren’t there? The whole fucking country has become a teeming mass of Gutfeld-ologists. Which is exactly what he was hoping for.

Bottom feeders such as Gutfeld and his gang are all about ratings. Seriously, it’s not like their careers are roaring along in the fast lane, so anything that gets them more play has got to be viewed as career advancement. Howard Stern made his career out of pissing people off and perpetrating as many immature, ridiculous stunts as possible. Gutfeld’s show is just an artless, rather pathetic attempt at the same tactic.

But, that doesn’t get any of you off the hook.

How many of you are brave enough to admit that some of what he said had an element of truth to it?

(I’m fairly certain that the cool finger that just ran up my spine was the focus of the crosshairs falling on my head for a good ol’ pillorying)

While replete with incredibly brave and effective young men and women, the Canadian military really is a little bit of a joke. We are poorly equipped and undermanned. We use cast-off technology and rely on other countries and other militaries for things as basic as transportation. Actually, it’s really a massive testament to the quality of soldier that we have that our military is as effective as it is, given the working conditions. Imagine doing your job every day with nothing more than a typewriter and a rotary phone, and I think you’ll understand the situation a little better.

There are roughly 2,500 Canadian troops in Afghanistan compared to the nearly 30,000 American troops. There have been 439 American fatalities in the Afghan conflict, compared to the 115 Canadian deaths. The British have lost 152. I would be remiss if I failed to mention that none of these deaths are necessary; the goal of this conflict was to root out Osama Bin Laden, and, somewhere along the way, we’ve lost focus on that and found some other raison d’etre to explain our presence there. I honestly believe that being in Afghanistan is an incredible waste of effort and life, and more than half of the Canadian population agree with me at last count. But, I admire the hell out of the men and women who are out there in the sand doing what they’ve been asked to do, bleeding and dying, in order to satisfy the whims of plump, pompous asses who have never been in a fight outside of the political arena.

We’d have fewer wars if the politicians who started them had to participate.

But, my point here is that Gutfeld is right, in a way. It’s utterly ridiculous, and more than a little embarassing, that after an armed conflict involving 2,500 troops we will need to take a year off to refit and regroup. It’s embarassing that we are running out of operational equipment like tanks. To poorly quote Sean Connery from “The Untouchables,” “If they pull a knife, you pull a gun. If they out one of yours in the hospital, you put one of theirs in the morgue,” except that, for the Canadian military, guns are in short supply, and one of ours in the hospital makes us too teary to keep our resolve.

And we’re the ones to blame. Either you have a military or you don’t. This half-assed approach we have to having a military is sad and pathetic and a disservice to the men and women who hold the line as members of the forces. We deserve the ridicule we get.

And, don’t sit there all indignant about the crap that Gutfeld tried to pass off as comedy. Sure, he’s an asshole, and sure, he deserves a kick in the head. But, do any of you really expect better? To say “American” is synonymous in the global lexicon with “ignorant, arrogant and abrasive.” For example, if on any given day I were to say “you’re acting pretty damn American right now,” I don’t think anybody on the receiving end would think I was suggesting their intellectual prowess and strength of character were shining through as bright idylls of human acheivement.

Every one of you who predictably pointed out just how arrogant, abrasive and ignorant Gutfeld’s show was should be ashamed of yourselves; first, for needlessly pointing out what is self-evident, second, for feeding the media beast that is getting this little fecal smear’s name in the headlines a little longer.

Sometimes, the best way to respond to someone’s self-serving stupidity is to not react at all.

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