The Post-Dispatch has always been a liberal rag and McClellan a reliably left-leaning voice, but this is a new low. As you might expect, the comments at the newspaper's site
are not favorable.
Michael Wilding · Top Commenter
Hmm, as far as cutting things Bill, maybe the first family's monthly vacations or the Vice-President's million dollar trip to France would be a good place to start. The commoner who served his/her country deserves a little more respect than a tune played from an iPod.
Cindy Martin · Top Commenter
I usually enjoy your column....but, I may have to quit reading.
My father served 20+ years in the Marines, including two tours in Vietnam. He died in December and we were just approved a claim that Agent Orange caused his death.
We did not have what is considered a "normal" childhood. We never lived near family, no joining the relatives for holidays, no overnight stays with the cousins. What we DID have was an educational childhood - we've traveled to more places within the US than most people will visit in a lifetime - including a five year tour in Hawaii.
After his 20+ years in the Marines, he "got on with his life." He went to work for McDonnell Douglas and we continued moving following the Harrier. We used to tease our parents that he never had to kick his kids out of the house - he just kept moving and, eventually, the kids quit moving with them.
This is the man you want to refuse military honors for? A man who not only fought for his country but died BECAUSE he fought for his country?
How dare you!
Cameron Lange · Assistant Superintendant at McCarthy Building Companies
I usually don't comment on articles here, but this article hurt my heart. In all the ways we as a nation can cut spending, why target something that costs $100 an occurrence? With the travel bills by the President, Vice President, and congressmen growing evermore extravagent and our government spending tax money on research studies like why lesbians are overweight, I wonder why this is where you propose we start trimming the excess. My grandfather served in WWII and, while I never had the privilege of meeting him, I guarantee you that he earned and deserved the honor of having a military funeral. This is such a small way to honor those who have served our country. I can't imagine taking that away.
Brian Hansen · Top Commenter · Tarkio College
Bill...I always read your column...I don't always agree, and this is one of those times. The playing of taps is above all a show of respect for the veteran's service. It is also tradition...and we know the military is steeped in tradition. The playing of taps through an electronic bugle cheapens the tradition and respect. When this "broke" government can shell out 2 million dollars for a program to allow inmates to pet horses or a couple of hundred thousand dollars to study duck penises, I say we can afford to have a live playing of taps at military funerals. We just need to cut the crazy stuff we spend money on.
Matt Conley · Top Commenter
We just gave the PLO Palestinian State ( A group who still supports terrorists who kill Americans.) $500 MILLION of borrowed money from China with another $200 MILLION soon to follow. That's after $250 MILLION Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt who support beating and raping women to death and Bill is worried about a couple of $ for showing respect to those that served?
Terri Kotula · Top Commenter
Oh, didn't you hear, Matt? Obama's "THEY WILL LOVE ME, IF I PAY THEM TO" Tour isn't going as planned...
Donald Ickes · Alton, Illinois
As someone who has served on the honor guard while on active duty in the Marine Corps, my first response was to tell Mr. McClellan to go take a flying leap. My second response was to stop, tell myself he is just looking for fat to cut, and anything that gets cut effects someone.Then reconsider.
So I reconsidered. I still disagree.
The effect the honor guard has on the deceased family is a extreme emotional, and it gives them a sense of honor. There loved one was so important that the Government sent people out to their funeral.
Okay, so there is that. It has an effect on people. As I mentioned before, everything has an effect on someone. Take in consideration who these people are. For the most part, the service men who are dieing are those who served during the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and a few left over from WWII. The size of our military has been shrinking ever since then, with a few bumps with the two Iraqi Wars and the one in Afghanistan. Even with both the Iraqi War and the Afghanistan War happening at the same time, or military numbers were much smaller when compared to the previous wars. (Disclaimer: That is unverified, working from memory and I didn't check it. I would be surprised if it wasn't true though.) In short, they were promised it, and participation in the program will go fall off.