"So, you'd 'never dream of disparaging their Commander-in-Chief.' I'm sure you said that about Clinton, right? Hypocrite," writes a smugly sarcastic, fact-challenged troll in the comments to our "Cowards cut and run. Marines never do" post. Cowards also hide behind fake email addresses on other people's blogs. Still, we appreciate the opportunity to offer a quickie civics lesson for those of our fellow citizens on the Left who seem confused about this freedom-of-speech thing. A succinct explanation from Allan Wall, a National Guardsman in Iraq writing for WorldNet Daily:
In the United States, the military is under civilian control . . . That's as it should be. The alternative is a military that makes policy, meddles in politics and can even take over the government. It's happened in other countries.
A soldier is commanded to obey, to carry out the policies of his government.
A citizen, on the other hand, has the right to question his government, and when an election comes along, to decide for whom he will vote.
When a man is both a soldier and a citizen, he finds himself exercising duties in different spheres of authority and responsibility.
Then there are citizens for whom "freedom of speech is merely a phrase to you, not something you believe in unless it applies to you," as milblogger Grey Eagle -- a 35-year-old wife, mother and US Soldier with the 101st Airborne Division in Iraq -- writes in answer to hate-spewing anti-war trolls who recently hacked her blog:
If you do not share the person’s view, you justify your actions in removing the ability for them to express their opinions. In doing so, you have only displayed to me that your cause is unjust, and strengthened my resolve and beliefs in what we are doing here . . . These were men and women who actually took a stand in what they believed in, sacrificed their time with their families, and put themselves in danger simply because they believed in something. So to support your beliefs what have you done? Oh, that is right, you took away my freedom to pay tribute and mourn my fellow soldiers.
Betsy Newmark of Betsy's Place is the one who called our attention to Grey Eagle. She's urging all of us to go over to her blog -- A Female Soldier -- to offer "words of support to let her know that not everyone is a troll." Done. Betsy herself is a fiery and dedicated history and civics teacher. It's all too obvious those trolls have never seen the inside of her classroom.