Have you tried the new Reese's Peanut Butter Oreos yet?
Do you think there's any scenario on Earth in which I haven't tried EVERY flavor of Oreo there is?
"Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
Or close the wall up with our English dead!
In peace there’s nothing so becomes a man
As modest stillness and humility:
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger!”
Such is how one might assume William Shakespeare would view our possible continued sojourn into the forsaken deserts of Iraq.
The President is considering a plan to send 100 special forces into Iraq to advise their government on how to handle a massive tsunami of rebellion, trying to plug holes in a dam with fingers mere moments before the waves crash against it. For the life of me I don’t understand what people think 100 special forces advisors will accomplish where 170,000 couldn’t, but that’s really neither here nor there.
ISIS— a rebel group so terrible that al Qaeda broke off ties with it due to it being too barbaric— is taking over Iraq. It’s awful, and it’s our fault. It’s absolutely our fault, as the United States. There can be no denying that.
A lot of misery will play out over the coming weeks, months, and years. Moreso than ever did before. And it’s on us. The blood is on our hands. I’m not saying our hearts weren’t in the right place (although there are those who would definitely say that.) I’m just saying
So obviously Americans want to help out. We want to be the heroes, to fulfill that delusion of grandeur that we regularly fail to live up to. But in this instance, we just can’t.
I’m reminded of that scene in Pulp Fiction where Marcellus is talking to Bruce Willis’ character. “That’s pride fuckin’ with ya. Fuck pride. Pride only hurts… it never helps. You fight thru it.” Pride will do us no good in Iraq.
Because the proud thing to do is to own our mistake. To clean it up. But sometimes when you try to clean things up, you just make it worse. It’s like quicksand— you fight and fight and it only sucks you in deeper.
Ultimately, some things can’t be repaired. We should have known that offing Saddam Hussein would create a whirlwind we couldn’t hope to predict, let alone control. But we didn’t. And we should have known that disbanding all facets of the Iraqi government would leave a power vacuum so big that this would happen. But we didn’t.
And now there’s really nothing we can do. Because to go back into Iraq would not only prolong the problem, but it would hurt our nation as well. And what then?
This whole thing kills me, because I’m a liberal at heart. And not the “defeat Republicans at all costs” liberal. I’m the kinda liberal that thinks there’s some great spark inside all of us, that somewhere we can all get along. I’m the worst kind of liberal. And despite that, it just kills me to know that despite all of our power as a nation, there’s still just some things that we cannot control.
And to try to help would be a terrible mistake. All we can do is move on and promise ourselves that we’ll learn from these last ten years, so further on down the road when it happens again, we know better how to act. That’s the only real way we can repay the tremendous loss of lives in Iraq, and start to wash away all the blood on our hands.
My buddy Mark and I had enjoyed a few cocktails outside of a bar in Chicago. It was New Years Day, roughly 2am, and the celebration had spilled out into the snowy streets.
As we stood there, teetering on the brink of sobriety, a sharp dressed man in a navy peacoat walked by.
"Hey guy, nice peacoat! Did you get that at Old Navy?" Mark asked him.
Immediately the dapper fellow reared around and pushed Mark, trying to start a fight.
"FUCK YOU! WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?"
I lunged to get in the way and stop a possible fight from happening. First of all, Mark would crush this guy then go to jail. Second of all, and more importantly, who wants to get in a fight past college? The thing with fighting is you always imagine it’s going to be awesome, like your favorite action movie. Then, instead of blindly kicking a guy in the face and winning a secret, international tournament— *cough* Bloodsport *cough*— you’re just rolling around on pavement. At some point you start incoherently screaming some phrase you swear makes you sound awesome, but just comes out as “EEEEEEEE!” Then the cops come and arrest you while you cry loudly about how you didn’t mean it.
And that’s if you’re the guy that WINS the fight. Imagine being the guy that loses? You know how much that hurts? Have you ever been punched? It sucks.
So I lunged to get in between these guys and stop the fight from happening.
"DOES HE EVEN KNOW WHO HE’S TALKING TO?"
"Oh, no, of course not. He’s drunk man! But I think he’s just trying to say he likes your jacket!"
"Well he fucking should! It’s from the fucking BANANA REPUBLIC! FUCK YOU!"
"Oh, man, I knew I recognized it! That’s why it’s such a nice coat!"
Immediately upon someone showing his coat some reverence, he backed down and stepped back out of my bearhug. He took a deep breath.
"You know, man, you’re alright. Your friend—" looking over my shoulder to make eye contact with Mark— "is a FUCKING DICK! But you’re alright."
And with that he shook my hand, turned, straightened out his navy peacoat from Banana Republic, and continued off into the night.
The kicker? Old Navy owns the Banana Republic.
Anyways, I learned a good lesson that night. Don’t even acknowledge a navy peacoat. Nothing good can come of it.
The Washington Redskins today were trapped in an endless bureaucracy that seemed to be stacked against them from the start. After a hard fought legal battle in which they were probably on the right side of the law, the US Government took the shocking steps to strip the Redskins of any rights they were given under law to make money and function as a member of society.
Rather than allow the Redskin culture to thrive in a place where the rest of us would like polite society to exist, I think I’ve come up with a plan to make this work in everyone’s best interest.
I call it the act of Redskins removal.
We don’t necessarily need the team to stop existing. Rather, they quite have the right to exist! We just need it to exist somewhere else. Therefore, I propose that the team goes west in search of a smaller media market. Something like, say, the plains, would work quite nicely. Oklahoma in particular doesn’t have a football team, and I think the Redskins would quite like the luscious land and bountiful earth found in the plains. As a matter of fact, I think they’d like it so much, we could even call it “Redskin Territory!” (Plus, there are so many fans of Buffalo out there, that with the mere existence of the Redskins out there it would cull the herd.)
Also, obviously, the Redskins aren’t going to want to go of their own volition. Who would? We need to make it clear, though, that the Redskins don’t really have a say in the matter. We need to light a fire under them, and once it’s hot enough, they’ll go.
If these Redskins don’t want to move, I think it’s also important that we create institutions (schools?) for their reintegration into society. We can get rid of those Redskins uniforms and the language that they learned in their old organization, and then teach them how the rest of us communicate and show them how to dress properly. That red and gold will go away and they can learn how to dress properly.
Ultimately, a lot of Redskins fans may not really understand what it is about their way of life that the rest of us hate. It is that very sentiment that drives the rest of us to want them educated and civilized. Only when the Redskins are gone or adapted can we truly feel like we’ve come together as a people!