Saturday, August 7, 2010

Obama, birthers, and the military

By now, it's old news that LTC Terrence Lakin went AWOL. He missed his duty flight to Afghanistan, apparently intentionally, because he said President Obama's birthplace was in doubt.

He said he didn't have to follow President Obama's orders until he saw his birth certificate.

Birthers are rallying around this guy, which is as logical as their entire program.

There is no question of President Obama's birthplace, at least to rational folks. He was born in Hawaii. Both newspapers reported it. The Republican governor of Hawaii has confirmed it.

Yet 27% of Americans believe there is justifiable doubt about this.

I don't believe the president is without his flaws. I've taken him to task on this blog here and here.

I will continue to criticize him when he errs and praise him when he does well. That's my job as a citizen. I did the same thing with, Bush, although there was much more to criticize.

However, if you're making things up just because you wish they were true, you're either eight years old or you need help. Some of these folks are paranoid - they're the children of the people who checked under their bed for Commies. Some of these people are racists and just looking for an excuse. None of these people are showing much sign of logical thought process.

However, in this swarming mass of Fox viewers and conspiracy freaks, there are probably a few folks who are neither paranoid about alien abduction in Southern trailer parks or shadow Klan members.

To those folks I say "Come on out." As long as you hold onto these silly fantasies, no one will ever listen to the potentially rational things you might add to the discourse.

Finally, for those who defend the bizarre actions of LTC Lakin - get a clue. There is no place in the military for this behavior. Disobeying a direct order from your superior is serious business and almost never - not never - almost never justified.

It's also illegal. Being in the military isn't like working at the grocery store. You voluntarily surrender some of your freedoms in order to defend other folks' freedoms. You are pretty much giving up the right to protest until you separate from the military.

That's made very clear to every military member. Certainly an officer and a surgeon understood this. He as much as said so in a Facebook video.

So, he not only went AWOL but he planned it and drew as much attention to it as possible.

Apparently, he wants to be an example. I'd give him his wish and give him jail least a few years.

For the military to function, folks in the military must follow the lawful orders of their superior members. He didn't. If say...oh, I don't know... 27% of the military followed his example, a lot of innocent heroes would be put in danger.

LTC Lakin - you're a surgeon. If you're not there, arguable people may die and definitely they will suffer needlessly. You failed those people. The arrogance of your actions deserve especially harsh punishment. You're not a hero; you're a border-line traitor to both your nation and your fellow military members. You should be very ashamed.

As always, if you're reading this somewhere and can't see links, go to for the whole story.

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