Monday, December 15, 2008

The Shoe Thing

I know, a lot of media outlets today are just cheering happily about an Iraqi journalist calling President Bush a "dog" and throwing a shoe at him as "the worst possible insult" in Islam. (Funny, I thought humiliating a man naked was the worst possible insult--at least that's what I heard when Abu Ghraib happened.)

The cheering section has forgotten something. The guy thinks Bush is a tyrant, and now he's got people chanting in the streets as if he's some sort of folk hero. All well and good.

But consider an alternate scenario. Imagine the guy he'd thrown a shoe at was Saddam Hussein. What do you suppose would have happened in Saddam's Iraq if the most powerful man in that country had had a shoe thrown at him? Would he be alive today? Would there be crowds cheering in the streets? No. That man would have been captured by Saddam's secret police, beaten up, and slowly lowered into a wood chipper. There would have been no show of public support for fear of similar treatment.

Now, did we really need to go in there? Perhaps not. But imagine where that journalist would be if he'd had similar spunk with a very different leader.

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