Where’s our ‘Wooden Ships’?

If you smile at me, I will understand ‘Cause that is something everybody everywhere does in the same language.

The United States has been a nation at war since October 7th, 2001. It started with Operation Enduring Freedom, which continues on to this very day.

I can see by your coat, my friend, you’re from the other side. There’s just one thing I got to know, Can you tell me please, who won?

According to the Department of Defense, 4,484 U.S. servicemembers have given their lives in Iraq since March 19, 2003 and another 33,186 servicemembers, were injured.  1,857 servicemembers gave their lives in Afghanistan.

Say, can I have some of your purple berries?

The total cost to the United States for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan comes to $1,289,372,747,265.00 as of January 5th, 2012.

Yes, I’ve been eating them for six or seven weeks now, haven’t got sick once. Probably keep us both alive.

The USA PATRIOT Act was enacted by Congress on October 26th, 2001.

Wooden ships on the water, very free and easy, Easy, you know the way it’s supposed to be,

On October 25th, 2002, the most outspoken critic of the Iraq war, Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone died in a tragic airplane crash en route to Eveleth, Minnesota.

Silver people on the shoreline, let us be, Talkin’ ’bout very free and easy…

On October 26th, 2004, rapper Eminem records “Mosh,” making it the first protest song written about the Iraq War written by a grammy winning artist.

Horror grips us as we watch you die,

Since then, Pink’s “Dear Mr. President” is the only protest song that has been written by a top 40 artist and it wasn’t even released in the United States.  Some protest, huh?

All we can do is echo your anguished cries,

So, where’s our Bob Dylan?  Because Bob Dylan can’t do this stuff anymore.  He’s 70 years old.  That’s too old to stop a war.  Where’s our Crosby, Stills and Nash?  I’ll tell you where.  They are on a dance floor, learning new moves.  Hell, I’m asking them to be socially conscious and they aren’t even musically conscious, as so-called musicians.

Stare as all human feelings die, We are leaving – you don’t need us.

During the Vietnam War era, people actually cared about stopping the war.  Perhaps it was because of the draft and they had a little skin in the game, but the point is, THEY CARED.  They protested.  They took over college campuses.  Their march on the Capitol had more than 250,000 people in attendance.  Now, anti-war protests don’t even make the news.

Go, take your sister then, by the hand,

So what’s the deal?  I see yellow “Support the Troops” magnets (not bumper stickers, people don’t care enough to affix something to their car that may lower the resale value however) wherever I go.  Why don’t people want the wars to end?  Do you like paying for them?  OH…that’s right.  You’re not paying for them.  Your children are. Duly noted.

lead her away from this foreign land,

A draft sure as hell would get people interested but the thing is, you’d hurt military readiness.  Our troops aren’t dumb.  They’re technical and they’re tactical.  We can’t just throw any dumb hick into that mix.  That’s why we screen people now.  But as a veteran, it would be fun as hell to see some of you entitled pricks  and keyboard commandos walk the walk instead of just talking the talk from behind a computer screen. But alas, it isn’t feasible.

Far away, where we might laugh again,

So I have to ask, where is Lady Gaga?  Where is Sean Combs?  They are two of pop music’s biggest icons and have shown themselves to be socially aware.  Where are they on the anti-war front?  Am I completely off the mark for thinking that our young people should be outraged that we’ve been at war for 10 years?  Is it wrong of me to think they should care?

We are leaving – you don’t need us.

Maybe it’s because Crosby, Stills and Nash new they might be drafted that they cared. Neither their money nor their fame insulated them from the draft.  The same can be said of Bob Dylan, Jorma Kaukonen and Pete Seeger.  Sean Combs knows he will never see combat unless he pisses off someone from the west side.

And it’s a fair wind, blowin’ warm,

Perhaps the key to stopping the wars is to make people pay for them but no politician will do that.  Their pockets are lined to keep the war going and if an honest politician did try to raise taxes to pay for the war, they’d be out of a job come the next election. We don’t pay to play in America.

Out of the south over my shoulder,

So you can expect the War on Terror…or Overseas Contingency Operations, as it’s called today to continue unabated for years to come.  We’ve been in Afghanistan for 10 years.  Look forward to 10 more.  Will it get as bloody as Iraq?  I hope not.  Will it continue to be a slow burn?  I hope not because as it is, people don’t care enough to stop it. And that’s a hell of a thing.

Guess I’ll set a course and go…

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Wooden Ships” is a rock song written and composed by David CrosbyStephen Stills and Paul Kantner(of Jefferson Airplane) in the late 1960s.