Junkiness is pleased as punch to present the first of our guest editorials! You may know him as one of the many voices on his new animated series, Freak Show, but I know him as my former neighbor and pretend grandma. Ladies and gentlemen, based on the uber-patriotic true story/urban legend “The Daughter of a Soldier” is the below guest editorial from Jon Benjamin.
The [Other] Daughter of a Soldier
H. Jon Benjamin
Last week, I was at the Atlanta airport returning home from a very important conference when I heard several people clapping behind me. I immediately turned around and witnessed one of the greatest acts of patriotism I’ve ever witnessed, and I’ve seen a lot of patriotic things in my life. For instance, I’ve seen a child beaten to death for letting the flag touch the ground on Flag Day. (Note– There is no better sacrifice to this great country than the death of child.).
Anyhoo, moving thru the terminal were a group of soldiers in their camouflage uniforms. As they were heading to their gate, everyone (well, almost everyone–there were one or two tea-loving liberals sitting there with that sanctimonious look in their eyes eating their Wolfgang Puck salads and feeling too superior to honor those who fight for our freedom) rose to their feet, waving and cheering. It was then that it hit me. I’m not alone. There are others like me who spontaneously applaud when we see the unmistakable pattern of camoflauge. I’m not the only hot-blooded, passionate, sex-starved, underpaid American who would unflinchingly show my support for our troops.
Of course, I began clapping wildly, almost to the point of confusion. I would not let these unsung heroes pass by without recognizing just how much I listen to conservative talk radio. These boys and girls need to feel special, and I’m not just talking about putting on a uniform and flying off to some rotting cesspool and shooting people. I’m talking about being appreciated for all that. It’s too easy to just dismiss these brave heroic individuals who put their lives on the line for the American dream of dying young.
Just when I thought I could not be more proud, a young girl, not more than six or seven, ran up to one of the soldiers. The soldier, himself no more than 20 or 21, kneeled down. What transpired next was beyond all fathoms of my patriotic fantasies–and I’ve had many. The little girl asked if the soldier would give something to her Daddy who was fighting over in Iraq. Suddenly, she grabbed the soldier and hugged him. Throughout this awesome display of pathos and American love, I was still clapping. Clapping so fervently that it distracted from the moment. But how was I to quell the patriotic lust that pumped through my American veins? And I was crying. Crying so loud and proud that I felt like the tears would never stop sending a message of support to our troops. I’m not going to lie to you, I’ve had a rough life. I rarely have taken responsibility for my actions and I have often projected my negative self image onto others. I guess you could say I’m a failure, but there is some hope. Hope in the idea that this scene with this little girl would turn out okay in the classic sense of melodrama.
The soldier conferred with another soldiery-looking guy and he pulled out a large walkie-talkie device and talked back and forth on it. He then turned back to the little girl and said, I just spoke to your Daddy and he told me to give you this. He hugged her. I couldn’t help noticing how that brave young soldier so deftly lied to that innocent little girl about talking to her Dad and that lie resonated so much about how and why we are fighting this all-too important war against our mortal enemies.
As I stood there applauding, I couldn’t also help but notice how long I had been applauding. I’ll never know what will happen to that soldier and that little girl, but I can only assume bad things. But, I do know this, I’ve never been more proud to have been flying American Airlines that day.