21 July 2006

You can't let go because you're not a Christian.

This week, ESPN.com did a three-part series on the 2004 friendly-fire death of Pat Tillman in Afghanistan. It's the best thing I've ever read on ESPN.com, hands down (sorry Bill Simmons. I still love you, though!)

The first installment, Pat Tillman's Uncertain Death, contains some of the most ridiculous things I've ever heard. Actually, it's beyond ridiculous. I find it absolutely digusting. The Army official who conducted the first official investigation into Tillman's death seems to think that Tillman's family is upset with the investigation results and won't ever be happy with any investigation results because they aren't Christians.

In an interview with ESPN.com, Kauzlarich said: "When you die, I mean, there is supposedly a better life, right? Well, if you are an atheist and you don't believe in anything, if you die, what is there to go to? Nothing. You are worm dirt. So for their son to die for nothing, and now he is no more — that is pretty hard to get your head around that. So I don't know how an atheist thinks. I can only imagine that that would be pretty tough."

Yeah, I'm sure that's why they're pissed. Not because it took the Army more than a month to actually tell them that Tillman had been killed by friendly fire. After they'd used his death to shore up public opinion on the war. What's that? Our government would never do such a thing, you say? Um, remember Jessica Lynch?

The full, three-part piece is really long, but it's worth the read if you have the time. I can't say I'm at all surprised by anything I read in it, save for the atheist-bashing from the Army lieutenant. I'm still angry after reading that. It's not like I'm an atheist. I was raised Catholic and I believe in God. I just quit going to Mass years ago because I can't stand the politics of the Catholic Church.

The family just wants the truth, for Christ's sake. And so do I. So should the rest of the American people. It's obscene for our government to exploit the death of a soldier for PR purposes. Especially when everything I've read about the man said that the last thing he wanted was to be seen as special or different than any other solider, simply because he had played in the NFL. He went to war to fight for our country, and this is how you treat his memory? Nicely done, U.S. Government.

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