This letter is in response to Tuesday's editorial entitled "Bush Balks at Confrontation." While I agree with the initial argument questioning President Bush taking time off while our country is at war, I must protest your portrayal of both Ms. Sheehan and her son. Do not misunderstand me. I do not take the fact that Ms. Sheehan tragically lost her son in the defense of this great nation lightly, nor am I in any way saying that she should not be allowed to hold her peaceful protest. I come from a large military family and I have friends who are putting their lives on the line in Iraq for our freedom. However, to claim that Ms. Sheehan represents her son's beliefs about the war, I find intellectually insulting. Casey Sheehan was not drafted. He volunteered, twice actually, to become a member of the elite brotherhood that is the United States military. It is interesting to note the oath of office includes the phrase "I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion." Furthermore, he volunteered for the unusually dangerous mission in which he died. Considering that the majority of the Collegian's readers are students of CSU, I would like to point out one more fact: Part of what makes America great is the fact that no one can tell you how to think or live your life, not even your parents. No one wants to have words put in his mouth or have values pushed on him in matters of such importance as this, especially by his parents. Ms. Sheehan has lost her son in the war and that earns her the right to grieve in whatever way she sees fit. She crossed the line, however, when she put the names of other military personnel on crosses, which were shown in national media coverage, without seeking or receiving the permission of family members. Ironically, the recently popularized phrase comes to mind, "Not In Our Name." While I take great joy from the fact that we live in a country where Ms. Sheehan can voice her disapproval of our military policy and fear no real retribution, I leave you with this question: Why are we focusing on the tragic death of Casey Sheehan for petty political reasons, rather than celebrating the extraordinary life and exemplary service of a man to whom we all owe our utmost respect?
Junior, history major