Skip to comments.Facing Fear and Other Cowardly Acts.
Posted on 10/05/2001 5:56:12 PM PDT by Common Tator
Many of us see the posts of those demanding immediate action and accusing our president of being a coward or dupe of some group. It is a common reaction to uncontrolled fear. People who are scared to death demand action. Because they believe action can remove their fear.
Fear is uncertainty. Will a plane crash tommorrow? Will I be killed or poisoned or worse? When will the next attack come. Will I survive it. That is the fear that drives people to demand instant action. If Bush just killed all the bad guys today it would be over. Their fear would be gone. When he does not do so they are even more frightened and angry. Their feelings are driven by their fear. It is called panic. And in war there are always those who panic. Leaders panic. Folowers panic. The news is full of those that panic.
For those of you who feel the terrible tensions of fear let me tell you a 'tator family secret.
I was a little boy in the early fall of 1944. My dad's cousin was home from the war. He was on crutches from wounds and He had a chest full of metals. His father had won the Congressional medal of honor for bravery a generation earlier. And his son, my 2nd cousin, had gone to West Point as a result and made the Army his career.
My cousin had no sons. So perhaps that is why he took to me. As he recovered from his wounds he spent some time with me. One day I confessed to him how inadequate I was. I told him I was scared of things. I asked him how to be big and fearless like he was.
He told me a secret. Just between the two of us he said. He said both he and his Daddy were cowards. Not only that but all 'tators were cowards. He said no one is as scared in battle as 'tators are. He told me he wet his pants in combat. I think he probably did.
He said there was a family secret and I must keep it too. When he was scared he said he always knew what he was supposed to do. He was scared because he knew what he was susposed to do and was afraid to do it. So he made himself do it even if he wet his pants while doing it. You can do it too he said, even if you are very very scared. When it is over other men will say you are fearless and brave.
He said that when I was afraid, if I would only do what I knew I should do, then other men would call me brave. And only other members of the 'tator clan would know we were all terrible cowards.
I have never faced the terrible things my cousin faced. I was in the army but won no metals. I have certainly been afraid, but always in my fear my older cousins words surface in my mind. And I always know what I should do and like the coward I am I shake as I do it.
All over free republic there are posts of people demanding resolution of the situation. They are scared and frightened. They demand the tension be over. They blame our leader for not fixing the cause of their fear in an instant.
To those who may feel like giving in to their fear and panic, I say our president is as afraid as you are. Everyone feels fear. No one escapes it. But President Bush is doing what he needs to do. He appears calm because he knows he needs to be calm to reassure us. He is doing what needs to be done. Because he knows he must. And therefore he is the bravest man in the land. For he is doing what needs to be done. He will not panic.
I read the statements of the Taliban on this site. I sense their fear, but more importantly I sense their panic. There is much fear in President Bush too. But there is no panic. President Bush will not make mistakes to relieve our tension. He knows that for the Taliban each day brings more panic. Each day they see the man who will not panic and is determined to do his duty in his own time. He will act only when total victory is assured.
Nothing is more effective in war than a man who will not panic. As the days go by understand that the tension we feel is mulitplied by 100 for our enemy. They will face uncontrolled fear and they will panic. They will make mistakes. But a man who will not panic will win this war. Dubya will win it and make it look easy. Look at him. Dubya does not panic. To our enemies that is the most frightening sight possible. And that fact should reduce all of our fears.
Just remind them that "Revenge is a dish, best served cold."
Courage is doing the very thing that frightens you.
We all conquer fear every day each time we act in spite of ourselves.
He said almost as important is acting like you have courage even when you don't.
Thanks for the essay.
At one point he picks up a frightened little girl, dries her tears and says:
I don't ask you to be unafraid, I only ask that you act as if you were.
Works for me.
I don't know, but I want them systematically eradicated, wordlwide and in any nation harboring them. Any nation.
The media should be ashamed for doing its part to whip our nation into a state of panic. My neighbor watches CNN. She's afraid of everything, bio., chem., nuclear, sabers, the unkown. Way to rally a nation, (un)American pundits.
Delay frustrates me, but it does not cause me to doubt our leaders. I have thanked God each day since 9/11 that we have Geo. W. Bush as President. He will do the right thing, and I know in my heart that he is just as pissed off at those worthless, murdering pigs as I am. He faces enormously difficult military and geopolitical problems. The worst thing we could do right now is launch an attack and be less than effective. Bush will attack when he knows it will have the desired impact on the enemy. We must leave them no hope.
I have no fear of domestic terrorists. It is an undeniable statistical fact that there is no more than a minute chance of me falling victim to that. I would not think of giving the terrorists the satisfaction of causing me to change any of my plans or habits. I'll fly on any damn plane I want to. I'll sit down next to the first Arab I see, give him a good hard stare, and dare him to so much as get up to go to the bathroom.
Here is a real fear I do have: I fear that during the next 25 years my kids and grandkids will not have the freedom, prosperity and security I have known. What happens over the next 12 months will have a lot to do with that. Aren't you glad it is Bush and not clinton/gore who will lead us through during that time?
I was until this situation came up. Then I went back to look for my self at the Greatest Generation. Not from 1942 to 1946, No I looked at 1932 to 1942. And guess what. That generation of leaders in the 1940's the Colonels and Captains, the Sargents and Rosie the Riveter were not so great in the formative years of the 30's. They flirted big time with Communism. Many thought we should just give communism a chance. The depression made the Soviet Union look good to many.
But there were many others who thought Hitler had the answer. Germany had recovered from the Depression years before we did. There were many who thought we needed a Fuhrer too. In the 1930s the middle was not demanding the end of welfare as they knew it. They were demanding to get to know welfare a lot better.
If you look at the 30's you will think there was a huge chance that freedom would be gone by 1950. But that decadent wrong headed generation became our greatest generation.
When i looked at the young in the 19030's I knew why Ronald Reagan was so optimistic. He knew what the greatest generation of was made of. And he knew that the 60s, 70s, and 80s generations were made of better stuff. Just for the record the 90's were too.
Don't fear this generation or the next. There are few except accademics who favor the socialist aproach. None think communism or national socialism is superior to our system. And young people always rebel. Perhaps it is better for our children to rebel against socialists teachers rather than capitalist.
Like Reagan I have come to the conclusion that the greatest generation was on the low side of average. They just faced huge challenges. They just rose to the challenge as this generation will also.
I think that Winston Churchill was right. If you are not a liberal at 20 you have no heart. If you are not a conservative at 40 you have no brain. Our young people have both hearts and brains.
By claiming to be objective, journalism assumes the mantle of teacher and puts it audience in the role of pupils--not to put too fine a point on it, children.
And what do they teach? Whatever makes it most difficult for people to ignore them--they teach fear.
Waaaayyy back in the mid nineties, a guy by the name of Yossef Bodansky was writing papers telling the Clinton administration about a little thing called the Trans-Asian Axis. He was naming names - Iraq, Iran, Syria, PAKISTAN, Afghanistan and CHINA. So, when we see those who we have elected ostensibly to give us a better alternative to the scum that inhabited the Executive for 8 years, our hope was that the new crowd might actually listen. Thus far, we have been disappointed. When one makes that statement "and those who harbor and aid them" one is necessarily talking about the Trans-Asian Axis (which, ever since the signing of the Shanghai Pact, also includes RUSSIA). And yet, we are fooling around with some sort of "expendable" coalition that INCLUDES SOME OF THE HARBORING / AIDING COUNTRIES!! It is truly that simple and truly that horrendous. The truth is, a real "War On Terrorism" would be a war between the US and our allies against the TRANS-ASIAN AXIS. Otherwise known as WWIII. That's the bottom line. The attack on US SOIL by agents / clients / proxies of THE TRANS-ASIAN AXIS merits a very specific and very unpallateable but, strategically necessary reponse - WWIII. Sorry to pop your balloon, that's the harsh reality. And thus far, our leaders are either doing a disinfo bit, precisely because in order to win such a conflict, we need surprise, or, more likely, they lack the stones to do what is strategically required to really win.
You just might lose.
Forgive my language, but you are blessed with the uncanny ability to cut through the crap from the media and others at this site.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.