As Sen. Kerry began his soon-to-be-reversed "I apologize to no one" rebuttal to a call for an apology, I was driving by the memorial built in honor of Kyle, my son, and the other fallen heroes from my town. As I listened, I tried unsuccessfully to make sense of the meteor shower of thoughts that were streaking through my mind. Then came one remembrance that brought all those other thoughts to an instantaneous halt. Last year I had written an editorial and I received a number of written replies. Among those was one postmarked from San Diego addressed simply to "the father of a hero" and my town of Emerson, N.J.
It started off friendly enough then quickly became argumentative and before the first paragraph was completed this individual had written, "I am glad that your son got killed for he probably was an idiot just like you". My first reaction, and really the only reaction I have ever had, was sadness for an individual who is so consumed with anger that he felt it necessary to lash out at me for my beliefs.
That is exactly how I feel about John Kerry. His anger was in full bloom as he tried desperately to control the damage that his words had caused. He knew full well that he could not defend his remarks, so he attacked President Bush. In doing so he reinforced his now fully revealed condescending attitude towards our troops. He talked over them, as he always does, never even beginning to understand that there might be individuals who were truly and deeply offended by his remarks. The explanation for that is quite simple: He firmly and deeply believes that anyone who would be so stupid as to join the military is beneath the high moral perch on which he thinks he sits.
Even in his so-called apology the next day, Mr. Kerry could not bring himself to admit that he had made a mistake. It was not his fault that I might be offended; it is my fault because I "misinterpreted" what he said.
Over these past 3 1/2 years, whenever I have been asked to be interviewed or speak at a function, I purposely do not write anything down. I do not want my emotions to be confined by the words that I have practiced; rather, I want to share with the people I am speaking with the full range of emotions that I live with each day in order that they might understand me in human terms. On the day that he aggrieved so many individuals by his words, that is what Sen. Kerry was doing. He dropped the pretense and revealed to the world what was in is heart, to his never-ending detriment.
But I commend the whole article to you, so that you, too might know of Kyle Griffin, and not just
that sour faced, retired Navy vet who serves as the junior senator from Mass.