19 October 2008

Righteous Conservatives (the good kind)

As the McCain campaign gets nastier and nastier, more prominent conservatives are finding their voices. Like other dissenters from the right over the past eight years some of the them are feeling the wrath of their own party, but they are undaunted in saying enough is enough. Ever since the selection of Sarah Palin as VP candidate, I have been waiting for intellectually honest conservatives to stand up for the truth. Recently some notable figures like Kathleen Parker, Christopher Buckley, and David Brooks to name just a few, have come forward. Most recently and most notably, Colin Powell was a superstar this morning on Meet the Press.

I don't know how many of you actually saw the whole Meet the Press interview that Powell gave this morning, but it was remarkable. Obama couldn't have asked for a better or more thorough endorsement if he wrote it himself. I was particularly pleased with Powell for pointing out what should be patently obvious to every American when he said the following (emphasis mine):

I'm also troubled by – not what Senator McCain says – but what members of
the Party say, and it is permitted to be said: such things as, "Well, you know
that Mr. Obama is a Muslim." Well, the correct answer is he is not a
Muslim. He's a Christian; has always been a Christian. But the
really right answer is, "What if he is? Is there something wrong with
being a Muslim in this country?"
The answer's "No, that's not
America." Is there something wrong with some seven-year-old Muslim
American kid believing that he or she could be President? Yet, I have
heard senior members of my own Party drop the suggestion he's Muslim and he
might be associated with terrorists. This is not the way we should be
doing it in America.

I feel strongly about this particular point because of a picture I saw
in a magazine. It was a photo essay about troops who were serving in Iraq
and Afghanistan. And one picture at the tail end of this photo essay was
of a mother in Arlington Cemetery. And she had her head on the headstone
of her son's grave. And as the picture focused in, you could see the
writing on the headstone. And it gave his awards – Purple Heart, Bronze Star;
showed that he died in Iraq; gave his date of birth, date of death. He was
twenty years old. And then at the very top of the headstone, it didn't have a
Christian cross. It didn't have a Star of David. It had a crescent
and a star of the Islamic faith. And his name was Karim Rashad Sultan
Kahn. And he was an American. He was born in New Jersey, he was
fourteen years old at the time of 9/11 and he waited until he could go serve his
country and he gave his life.

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