Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Thank you, Cindy Sheehan

In a statement full of love, bitterness and truth, my hero Cindy Sheehan has resigned as the face of the peace movement: Good Riddance Attention Whore.
I remember when "Casey Sheehan" appeared among the names of soldiers dead in Iraq because his name was the same as mine. I posted his death notice on my office door along with (now) thousands of others, and then his picture on the occasion of the 2000th US death in Operation Iraqi Freedom. However, I missed the event that triggered Cindy Sheehan's heroic quest for peace, when she and other bereaved military families were flown to Washington D.C. to pose with Bush a few months after Casey Sheehan's death. Not long after that, Cindy Sheehan realized that Casey's death and her grief had been callously used in this "meeting" with the president to glorify a war with which she had never agreed and which she began to see was justified only by wave upon wave of lies. She demanded to meet again with Bush, this time to engage in a truthful discussion of the war. The Vacaville Reporter, from Sheehan's home town, expressed a common reaction to her quest in an article entitled "Mother Already Met Bush:"
President Bush already heard her last year when taxpayers paid her way to visit him. Later, she told The Reporter that she knew Bush is "sorry and feels some pain for our loss." On Sunday, she told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that Bush's deputy chief of staff met with her in Texas and told her "the president really cares." And I said, "You can't tell me that because I've met with him and I know that he doesn't care."

Mrs. Sheehan has had her turn with the president and changed her statements about their meeting. President Bush shouldn't waste more time on her.

Sheehan's quest, in a sense, has been an effort to rescue "Casey Sheehan" from the dreaded free play of signifiers into which she introduced it by posing with the president and (re?)unite it with its true meaning. The Bush PR machine made Sheehan use her son's name in a statement supporting the war; Sheehan's quest to meet with Bush again is an effort to unsay that utterance and uncouple "Casey Sheehan" from the administration's lies. In her statement of resignation she says:
The most devastating conclusion that I reached this morning, however, was that Casey did indeed die for nothing.
Unfortunately, but inevitably, thanks to Cindy Sheehan's efforts, Casey Sheehan's death is not meaningless; rather, it has come to mean too much.

Another view: The Field Negro, New Faces Needed.

And another: IsThatLatin at goldbricker, Cindy Sheehan Calls It Quits.

And another: Dr. L. Jean Daniels at The Black Commentator Represent Our Resistance

Then there's this:

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