Lots of talk about The Big Lie going around. Mr. Goebbels gets the credit for the turn of phrase. Obviously he didn’t own it. If he did, the United States of America would be paying whopping royalties these days. Look at the polls which indicate huge numbers of Americans believe that Bush did a bang-up job with the Katrina disaster, that there were weapons of mass destruction in Saddam’s arsenal, that the reason we went to war in Iraq was that Saddam wouldn’t let inspectors in, that the Al Qaeda operatives now in Iraq were there all along, that tax relief for the rich has left lower income Americans better off, that no child is being left behind in American schools. This sinister administration has discovered an important truth. Lying works. You just gotta keep it up, and eventually people will believe you.
If you have any inclination toward depression, this evidence of homo erectus dysfunction ought to pitch you into the darkness. Thank God there are crazy people running around like Cindy Sheehan, who has just bought property in Crawford, Texas, the better to function as a thorn in the side of the Liar-in-Chief.
My vote for the day, though, for best Big Lie has to do with something called the DADT policy. That’s “Don’t ask/don’t tell” and it refers to the army’s policy toward gay people in the military. If you don’t tell us you’re gay (i.e., if you lie and make efforts to act as if you’re not), then we won’t ask. Not what I learned to do in Sunday School when they told me helping somebody else lie was lying too.
The problem with this policy showed up recently in the discharge of this guy from Tennessee named Bleu Copas. Love the name, by the way. Ain’t hard on the eyes, either, for that matter. But I digress.
Bleu’s blues started when his commanding officer, one Lt. Col. James Zellmer, got an e-mail saying, “I want you to get this guy Bleu Copas out of the army because he’s gay. And if you don’t, “I will inform your entire battalion of the information that I gave you.” Signed, John Smith.
Well, what’s a light colonel to do when faced with such a threat? Break the “don’t ask” rule, obviously. “Well, are you gay?” he asked Bleu. “No,” answered Bleu, lying as he was supposed to to follow the “don’t tell” rule.
But John Smith didn’t let up, and eventually investigators called Bleu in and interrogated him. “Are you gay?” “Do you know any gay people?” “Are you involved in community theater?”
Bleu saw the writing on the wall, got a lawyer, and eventually decided to accept an honorable discharge, knowing he and probably friends of his would suffer if he tried to swim upstream on this issue.
I read about him in a gay newspaper from Eastern Tennessee, where Bleu appeared and sang the “Star-Spangled Banner” at some function. Apparently this guy’s got musical talent. And patriotism. Sort of like these priests defrocked by the pope for their work for the poor in Latin America against fascist governments which the church wants them to support instead. Seems lot of them remain loyal catholics. A sweeter gentler kind of dysfunctional homo whatever.
So this is maybe not the happy ending Bleu Copas wanted to his army career, but he’ll be all right. Wish I could say the same for this place called America. It loses one of the men it trained at the Defence Language Institute to speak Arabic. And Bleu, curiously, turns out to be only one of fifty-five such skilled people. Out of 300 “linguists” discharged for the sin of being born with urges to express affection in ungovernmental ways.
Arabic speakers? Do we need those guys? Apparently not. Do we need to worry about the thousands of taxpayer dollars it took to train them? Apparently not. And do we need to worry this guy is losing his job because of a slander (oh God, please let me live to see the day when being called a Presbyterian is a slander)? Apparently not. By an anonymous patriot? Apparently not.
If anybody is to blame here, it’s probably the victim. Shouldn’t have tried to serve his country and risk ticking off some closet homosexual expressing his self-loathing. God knows I’ve known dozens of those. Best guess, though, about the identity of John Smith is that he is a jilted lover.
I guess the moral of the story is that if you’re gay and you make love with somebody you should do like the preying mantises do and eat him up after coitus.
Makes as much sense as all this other crap in this Era of the Big Lie.
July 28, 2006