Tuesday, September 25, 2007

I Pity the Haters

This Guest Contributor Article was in the Post - Dispatch today. Read the article, get fired up, and write your letter today!

Send letters to letters@post-dispatch.com

This guy teaches "Introduction to the Administration of Justice" and "Introduction to Corrections" at SWIC. It is scary to think this is the mind that is educating our future police officers!

Inside the confused brain of a war protestor
By Dave Morris

A couple of weeks ago, I was watching the news and saw this woman — I've no idea what her name is — lying on the ground pretending to be dead as part of a protest against the war in Iraq, and then talking to a reporter. She managed to convey an attitude that shouted, "Look at me! See how special I am!"

I started thinking about this person on my TV screen. I gave her a name — Samantha, Sam to her many friends — and then created a story about the person I imagined her to be: Sam feels proud and elated for playing an active part in raising America's consciousness regarding "Bush's evil war." She gets what she regards as "a warm, fuzzy feeling" whenever she thinks about the "die-in." She smiles, telling how she and all the other caring, concerned protestors symbolized the horrible deaths our country is causing in Iraq.

Sam regrets that she wasn't arrested. She's also upset that a camera crew spent more time interviewing another participant just a few feet from her than it spent with her. I think poor Sam doesn't understand that tiny electrical impulses resulting from chemical reactions inside her head are responsible for many of her thoughts. She knows from first-hand experience that some substances such as alcohol can temporarily short-circuit her brain's wiring. But Sam doesn't appreciate the extent that her thoughts are controlled by the chemical makeup of that ugly gray organ lodged in her skull. No, Sam thinks she controls her thoughts.

In reality, she has about as much control over her thoughts as she does over her breathing. If she concentrates really hard, she can control her thoughts for a little while, just as she can hold her breath for a little while. And Sam doesn't understand that her thoughts — the brilliant ones as well as the incredibly stupid ones — propel her through life, responsible for virtually all of her supposed voluntary actions.

These thoughts, over which Sam has very little control, make her hate guns, make her watch Oprah religiously, drink herbal tea, vote for Democrats, love her children and feel guilty about all sorts of things. And they also make her feel superior to people whose values are different from hers.

Sam's brain is forever telling her conflicting things. Because of messages sent through little pulses of electricity in her brain, Sam believes that life means something very specific. So Sam became a protestor. She took to the streets carrying signs supporting embryonic stem cell research, calling for stricter gun laws and the abolition of capital punishment.

This protesting activity makes Sam happy because her brain has convinced her that she is a vital link in a human chain of enlightened people. It tells her that she is doing important work that will significantly improve life. What Sam doesn't understand is that her identity as a link in a human chain is merely something of which her brain has convinced her.

My brain tells me to laugh at Sam. What does your brain tell you?

Dave Morris of Smithton is a semi-retired criminologist who worked for the Illinois Department of Corrections. He serves on the adjunct faculty at Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville.


I Pity the Haters

My name is Adam Kokesh and I am Co-Chairman of Iraq Veterans Against the War. I led the massive die-in civil disobedience that Dave Morris refers to in his article "Inside the confused brain of a war protestor." A large part of our role as Iraq veterans in the anti-war movement is using our experience and credibility to cut through the lies and spin put forth by this administration and its lackeys who support its wars. Unfortunately, it is not enough that we have to contend with an administration lying about what is happening in Iraq, a media that fails to discern the truth, but now we have to contend with utter fabrications about our movement such as the one you published by Dave Morris.

In his article, he goes "inside the confused brain of a war protestor." Were he a trained psychoanalyst, there may have been some credibility to his story, but coming from someone who refers to the wondrous human brain as an "ugly gray organ," it is clear that his only real area of expertise is hatred.

He fabricated a whole story about a protestor that he saw on TV and held her up as the arch-type. "Sam feels proud and elated for playing an active part in raising America's consciousness regarding 'Bush's evil war.'" For me, this much is true. "Sam doesn't appreciate the extent that her thoughts are controlled by the chemical makeup of that ugly gray organ lodged in her skull. No, Sam thinks she controls her thoughts." Having majored in psychology, I am completely familiar with the concept here, but Dave Morris knows nothing of my educational background, and uses an academic idea to belittle.

The sad part about this article, is how clear it is that Dave (assuming he is a proponent of the war in Iraq) has no control over his thoughts. He thinks that because he can read the mind of a war protestor, he is not a victim of the propaganda of this administration. He still believes there is a connection between Saddam and Al Qaeda. He thinks if we just stay in Iraq for few decades more, sooner or later we will find those weapons of mass destruction. In reality, he is a tool who has only as much control of his thoughts as his government permits him.

"If she concentrates really hard, she can control her thoughts for a little while, just as she can hold her breath for a little while." If only Dave decided to take control of his thoughts for just a little while, and stopped breathing through his mouth, he might realize the value of protesting in a Democracy. He might realize that those who want to participate at a level beyond voting should be lauded and welcomed regardless of their position. I vehemently disagree with the counter-protestors who think we should be in Iraq indefinitely, but while leading the Iraq Veterans Against the War color guard, I halted the entire march to stop, present colors, and salute them.

For the record, I don't carry "signs supporting embryonic stem cell research," have never watched Oprah, don't vote for Democrats, and I am as anti-gun control as they get. The only thing I feel guilty about is being suckered into supporting the occupation of Iraq. I'm a Libertarian. But Dave would rather anyone not like him be put into boxes and conform to his stereotypes. To perpetuate such stereotypes is grossly irresponsible. He is right about one thing, I cannot help but feel superior to people like him. But it is not because of his values, but because of his hatred and ignorance. My brain tells me to pity him.

Adam Kokesh
Iraq Veterans Against the War

Adam Kokesh served as a Sergeant on a Marine Corps Civil Affairs Team from February to September of 2004 in the Fallujah area.


Jeremiah said...


A very well thought out response. Thank you!


Anonymous said...

Adam, I love to read you! Bravo!

One Angry Patriot said...

Way to go Adam! I respect and admire you more and more with every post on your blog, and every news story about you that I hear on the radio or read on the internet. I've posted the youtube video of your speech on the 15th at my blog, along with some glowing praise of you and your work. Keep it up brother! Semper Fi!

Anonymous said...

I sent an email to the post-dispatch stating my agreement with your letter.

The real haters were the FReepers, shouting in people's faces, trying to start fights with peaceful protesters including parents holding their young children.


Kenyon said...

"Semi-retired" -- he needs to go into permanent full retirement.

nancyb said...

My brain has developed a really big respect for Adam Kokesh. He is not only smart, but committed. And the work he is doing recently has had an enormous impact on the antiwar movement. Thank you Adam.

Tenzing said...

Thank you, Adam, for your thoughtful and gentle rebuke. Your presence in the movement for peace and reconciliation is much appreciated by this buck sergeant from a couple wars ago. Be good to meet you sometime in northwest Washington. Look forward to it.

jae said...

Adam -

I find your efforts most admirable. Thank you for your service to this country and thank you even more for your courage to speak your truth.

Terri said...

You really put Mr. Morris in his place. You have a beautiful mind and you are eloquent! Your bravery turns me on.

Here's a little story I wrote. It's about what it feels like to wake up from this reality the media has provided for us....
Mr. Morris, I'll tell you how it feels to be a war protester. I'll also tell you how it feels to wake up, so that if you ever get there you will know it.

There's a Tiger in Your Closet

Someone whispered, "There's a Tiger in everyone's closet. One day really soon, all the Tigers will all jump out at once, and eat us all. You won't believe who put them there."

"Ha! Dumb ass idiot paranoid weirdo freak. Conspiracy nutbar unpatriotic- during- war- time, lilly livered mental flop!" most everyone said. "I'll kick your ass if you even bring that up again, punk ass mother f***er!" the others said.

But there was a lady who knew a lot about tigers, she was a Tiger Zoologist. She studied Black Tigers at OU and got a bachelors degree with honors. When this Black Tiger lady heard someone whisper about supposed tigers, and saw the controversy that followed, she knew she could find the truth. She had to open her closet door and look to see if a tiger was really there. She had seen tiger food invoices blowing in the wind before, and people were mysteriously shoveling tiger shit everywhere in town. The local news said that the shit shovelers were actually beautifying the streets and preparing for planting some beautiful healthy flowers and fruit trees for everyone, like a Garden of Eden. And mist, lots of mist.

So she went to the back of the closet and pushed the clothes aside. There was a warning not to look, but she remembered that she was in America. Land of the Free, Home of the Brave. Freedom of Speech is the First Amendment, Freedom of the Press, Freedom of INFORMATION, Freedom to Study.

She hadn't really noticed that there was a door in the back of her closet. Plus the TV always said it's not normal to go playing around in the back of your closet because that's where child molesters and kidnappers and freaks hangout. She heard shuffling behind this door.

Holy Cow is there something moving in her closet? Could these rumors that are infecting the minds of these victims of mass hysteria be true? She opened the door.

This Tiger had a roar that made her hair blow back and made her pee in her pants so she slammed that door shut. Then she opened it right backup and got another look and slammed it back real fast. Then opened it and slammed it again and again. Well, she thought. It certainly physically looks like a tiger at first, but you never know about this stuff behind the door. Sometimes it's all fake monsters in your closet. Sometimes it's made up. "Dear God Almighty I pray to you on my knees weeping let this not be a Tiger," she said.

So she borrowed a bunch of text books that were specific to this type of Tiger and started brushing up. She took hair, saliva, and fecal samples. All DNA tested positive for Red Tiger. Coat color, incisor length, temperament,eye color, head shape, tail length, whisker color, stripe width, and voice patterns all tested positive for Red Tiger. It was a Red Tiger, of champion breed.

Oh woe is the heart belonging to the mind ill equipped for protection from the knowledge of good and evil. How I wish that blissful ignorance and denial would bring mercy to my broken heart.

Terri C...
Bachelor of Science Mechanical Engineering, University of Oklahoma
Dean's Honor Roll Recipient
Awarded lifetime membership in the National Honorary Mathematics
Society Pi Mu Epsilon
Proud member of Scholars for Truth and Justice