Sunday, April 08, 2007

Make No Mistake

It's lines like this that are going to push Obama to the Democratic nomination and the Presidency:
Mr. Obama was approached by a woman, her eyes wet. She spoke into his ear and began to weep, collapsing into his embrace. They stood like that for a full minute, Mr. Obama looking ashen, before she pulled away. She began crying again, Mr. Obama pulled her in for another embrace.

The woman left declining to give her name or recount their conversation. Mr. Obama said she told him what had happened to her 20-year-old son, who was serving in Iraq.

“Her son died,” he said. He paused. “What can you say? This happens to me every single place I go.”

The next day, at the rally here, Mr. Obama described the encounter for the crowd. The woman, he said, had asked if her son’s death was the result of a mistake by the government. “And I told her the service of our young men and women — the duty they show this country — that’s never a mistake,” he said.


1 comment:

  1. I wondered today how many people have a high school classmate who has been a casualty in the war. A guy who graduated the year ahead of me ODed on prescription meds a few months after being sent to Iraq; one of my boyfriend's classmates was killed last year by an IED (the bf's family moved away from the town where he went to high school, so he didn't even know about the death until yesterday when he was looking up an old friend). And how many more are among the 24,000 physically wounded? And how many again among the unnumbered mentally wounded?

    A soldier who went to college in my hometown was arrested last month after police found pipe bombs in his apartment, and his roommate claims that he blew up a Catholic center's Virgin Mary statue and beat his pet kitten to death. The soldier's family is trying to have him found mentally incompetent due to PTSD.

    Southerners might be slightly overrepresented in the military (I'm from East TX, my boyfriend went to high school in Alabama), but I think a lot of people who haven't kept in touch with their roots may not realize how close the war has come to people they've known.