An online petition to put his daughters where his mouth is.

By Kevin Schaaf

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Draft the twins

The war on terror is large and growing. Afghanistan is still a mess – with opium production booming and warlords controlling much of the country. The President pointedly avoids discussing any end to the Iraqi occupation. And now Iran refuses to listen to reason and pushes forward with its nuclear ambitions. It looks like military force is “on the table” once again. Yet with the U.S. military lagging well behind in its recruitment goals, clearly we need more soldiers to win this war.

So, what’s a patriotic American to do? Join up!?

Well, first of all, I can’t. I’ve got a new puppy at home to train, plus I’m a teacher in a low-income school, and the President is always saying how important education is. But more importantly, there’s my wife. We’ve got three kids on the way (she’s pregnant with one, and we’re adopting a brother and sister through the foster care system). Plus, my wife is a little liberal, and super tough. She’d kill me if I joined up to fight in a war based on a lie about an imminent threat from weapons of mass destruction that the President knew didn’t exist. She’s funny that way, and her temper’s been a little short since she started throwing up twice a day. So it’s easy to see, regardless of my feelings, I’d be no good to the Army if I showed up at boot camp dead, and I’m clearly needed here on the home front. Did I mention that I teach third grade in a low-income school? This means that in ten years, my students are going to be needed for the liberation of Syria, and the Iraqi Army may still need some training, so it’s important that the next generation of soldiers can read and write clearly.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that I’m excused from a duty to my country. No, this war is far too vast and all-encompassing for me to bow out with claims that I’m busy with teaching, or doing dishes, or my newest one – the dog needs exercise. (By the way, before you get too critical of me wasting all this time playing with our new puppy, you should know that our cute little German Shepherd is the central line of defense in our own “homeland” security system – we’ve got a new security screen door and the dog, up and running only a few months after our front door was kicked in and the homestead burglarized. We still don’t have a color-coded system of alerts, but I am planning to print out a Beware of Dog sign and tape it to the window. Oh, don’t worry, the police suspect it was some teenagers looking for some cash or a gun. No evidence of any domestic terrorist involvement, so there’s no need to involve the National Guard, and they’re busy anyway, in some other nation.)

Er… as I was saying, just because I have to teach a few eight year-olds how to write well- structured paragraphs, that’s no reason to sit back and ignore the World-Wide War on Terror. No, everyone needs to do her/his part. This brings me, finally, to my point. I have initiated an effort to Draft the Twins. Jenna and Barbara Bush, the U.S. Army wants you!

(Really, can you blame me for being a little round-a-bout? Who could have predicted five years ago that a thirty-four year-old elementary school teacher would be needed to figure out how to win a war in Iran and Iraq? I mean, in my formative years, we got Iran to fight Iraq. Sure, it was an imperfect strategy. We gave this evil Saddam character lots of money and weaponry, ignored the “mass graves,” and the “gassing of his own people,” and certainly contributed to lots of misery. But, in those days, Iran was even “badder” than Saddam. And by not sending our own kids to fight, die and torture, I was able to grow up watching MTV; I didn’t have to bother with CNN and those soon-to-be confusing images of Donald Rumsfeld shaking hands with Saddam Hussein.)

So, to recap. The question was: what can we do? The answer is: convince Jenna and Barbara Bush to join the U.S. Army. It makes sense, if you think about it. While some patriotic, but perhaps misguided Americans are busy trying to Draft Hillary to run in 2008, thinking that perhaps another Clinton can lead us to a decade of peace and prosperity, I believe it is time we worked on a more immediate, and more difficult goal. I mean, Hillary is running for President anyway. She doesn’t need any encouragement. Jenna and Barbara, however, seem to be a little adrift, perhaps in need of a little discipline, as the children of the rich and famous often seem to be.

Honestly, though, the Draft the Twins campaign is not primarily interested in what’s best for the twins. We are focused on what is best for the country. Without Jenna and Barbara, the military is overstretched, the people’s commitment to the war effort is flagging, and our leader’s dedication appears hypocritical to some. But, if we can convince Jenna and Barbara, or I’d even settle for one of them, to sign up, and go and fight, we could see all these problems turn around. In the midst of a busy schedule of $2 million BBQ fundraisers and biking with Lance Armstrong, the President appears unwilling to find time for a discussion of “the noble purpose” of this war. But if Jenna and Barbara signed up… well, actions speak louder than words, and you can bet that the questions will fade away. Plus, there’s the recruitment problem. I could join up (were it not for the wife, children and dog discussed previously) but that would only mean one more soldier. But Jenna and Barbara are twins! No, just kidding. Their real value is in marketing. The military is trying to market itself in all the worst high schools in the country, and I know they’ve connected with some of the very best marketing firms, yet they still seem to be coming in with low numbers. But you just can’t beat celebrity twin pitch models! Plus, there’s that whole moral appeal of consistency, commitment, and true sacrifice. To be short – it’s called leadership, and it’s what we’re missing right now.

To show your support, post a comment. Of course Bush already knows you were checking out this page.