Thursday, August 25, 2005

Looking into the big picture...

So I am sure many of you who have heard about Cindy Sheehan. She's the mom of a man who died in the Iraq War last year, and is protesting near President Bush's ranch in Texas. She's upset because she thinks misintelligence is the reason her son died and she is protesting that fact. Essentially she is blaming the President because he makes the bog decisions on when and where to attack.

She is allowed under our Nation's 1st Amendment to do so. More power to her. I can't say I'd do the same thing in her place, but who am I to tell her how to feel? Perhaps this protest will help her to get through her grieving period.

The topic got me thinking and wondering: how many people have died in the Iraq War so far? How do the statistics of this war compare to other major wars/conflicts the U.S. has participated in? I loked it up. You wouldn't belive the amount of websites to carry this information. But here's a breif summary..

According to a total of 2098 military personnel have died in Iraq/Afghanistan. Thier estimate is since the war started (3/19/03). However, I could not find a date listing when the site had been updated last, so these numbers could be a little more. I also checked out the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) website for the official report of wars past. Ok, so in comparison to other major wars from most recent to our Nation's 1st (this is total deaths):

Iraq War (2003- present): 2,098
Persian Gulf War (1990-1991): 382
Vietnam Conflict (1964-1973): 58,209
Korean War (1950-1953): 36,574
World War II (1941-1946): 405,399
World War I (1917-1918): 116,516
Civil War (1861-1865): 364,511
War of 1812 (1812-1815): 2,260
Revolutionary War (1775-1783):4,435

So as you can see, the Iraq War is, at the moment, the 2nd lowest as far as deaths. Considering the technology and weaponry the US has these days, I'd say that is not bad at all. That is not to say that I regard ANY of these deaths with a grain of salt. Of course it is devastation to those families who have lost loved ones. Of course some mistakes were made in this and past wars. One of the big problems I see with the public's misunderstanding of why deaths occur is that many Americans view the Military as an infallible force that is perfect. I can attest from experience, that this is not true. While the military, and I mean all branches, strive for excellence and perfection, I feel the need to point out that ALL MILITARY PERSONELL are HUMAN BEINGS! We are not perfect. No one is, except God. Yes, some intelligence we have gotten in wars is not right, or bad, and has resulted in deaths. Yes, sometimes polititans have gone against the popularity and kept forces in a place, or started a war. Sometimes it was a bad idea. But again, even the people who make the decisions are human. They go on the intelligence they recieve. Time is limited. There is not always the chance to check again. Decisons have to be made. Sometimes the decision not to strike is made, and people have died anyway.

The fact of the matter is this: war is war. It's not pretty. It's not perfect. People die. But the people who do die join the military for a reason. They are brave enough to fight, guard, supply, fly, or get in their tin cans under the water and pray they don't hit an underwater mine or mountain. When a miltary member joins, they know what they are getting into. They are adults and make their own decisions, sometimes against their family's wishes. Yes, it's very sad if they die. But trying to blame a higher problem isn't going to solve anything if you don't know the whole story. And if the public knew the whole story, we'd all be dead, I'm afraid. I feel that while the public has the right to know a lot of information, giving out every little detail would result in even bigger problems. Leave the issues to the military and the people you voted for to lead this country. If you don't like how they handled things, go to the polls next year and vote them out!

So Cindy Sheehan, we get the message. You are angry your son died. I am too. I am also angry that Iraq has so many hateful people in it, and they don't have the freedom to do what you are doing. Please think about that the next time you go out to President Bush's ranch in protest. He's only human. Just like you and me. In the meantime, I hope that you can get over your grief and move on with your life, perhaps being a stong woman that you seem to be. May God Bless you.

Butterflies and Tears

Today my oldest daughter goes to Pre-K. Since she went to Pre-School last year, when we lived in FL, you'd think that I would be ok with this. I am. I just feel queasy about the whole thing.

My daughter and I went to the "First Day of School Celebration" that the school had, and it was nice. I got to see her class, talk to her teacher for about 20 minutes, and met another parent. My daughter volunteered to go to bed an hour before usual last night because she is so excited.

My worry is...well that's just it. I'm not worried, I'm nervous. And sad. And happy. She's going to a real elementarty school. The school she will go to for the next, oh 5 years I think, depending on how long we stay stationed here. I still have vivid memories of her being a little baby learning how to roll over! She's grown into quite the little lady. I am so proud. And yet, her eagerness makes me sad at the same time because in no time, she'll be leaving for college it seems.

I never really thought something like this would affect me so much. I mean, it's just my daughter going to school. Not even a full-day class! So what's my problem? I've talked to other mom's, including my own, and it seems this is natural. Mother's are supposed to feel this way when their kids start school. Anxious for their well being, hopeful they will make friends. Happy because they child is growing up, sad because there is no denying your child isn't a baby anymore. As natural as this all is, it doesn't mean I have to like it!

Well, I must go. My daughter is begging for breakfast and to get dressed. The day is going to happen, so I might as well face it!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

This is just ridiculous!

I just read this article on Yahoo. I had to laugh...

How Much?!?!

Well I have just about had a heart attack this morning. I needed to buy gas for my car. Now, I don't own an SUV. In fact, I own a pretty fuel efficient sedan. I can get 24 MPG city/30 MPG hwy. My tank is a little voer 17 gallons. On average, I have to travel 350-400 miles before I need to fill up.

I have to take a trip to RI this weekend. I figured I would fill up early, avoid the wekend rush. Plus, I was nearly on empty. Now, most of the time, I can put about $25.00 in my car and get almost a full tank, but not today...oh no... I paid over $37.00 for 14 gallons of gas!!! $2.59 a gallon I paid...I almost cried when I saw that. Now, my husband drives and SUV. My god, I am guessing it will take at least $50 to fill his truck. I think I am going to have a heart attack now.

I checked a bunch of websites, and the AVERAGE price for gas in the US, as of 8/22 - that's yesterday - is...get ready for it....$2.61 a gallon!!!!

That is $.88 cents more than it was in JANUARY! INSANE!!! Why isn't the Government doing something about this? They are letting gas go insanely high! What can you do? What can I do? Well I dunno about anyone else, but I sure hope they come out with some more hybrid model cars...preferrably in sedan/minivan size. Because I can't afford much more of this!

So I am going to look up what the gov't is doing about it. I'll keep you posted. If you have any ideas why, or what we can do to make it lower, lemme know....


So I got this idea....

Everytime I start a blog, I end up being good about posting for about 2 weeks. Then, something in my life takes over, and it's lost to the endless sea of blogs on the internet So I am warning you now....I don't know when I will update.

So anyway, I think I am about to have one of those moments. My oldest starts Pre-K tomorrow. I have a family reunion this weekend. I still have to finish unpacking this house from our move (I moved in July from FL to CT). I am in a local production (I'm an actress of sorts). I want to get my oldest into girl scouts, join the PTO.

I just wanted to mention something else: In case y'all didn't know, Cissa is NOT my real name. It's my "alter ego". I play an online video game on my computer and this is my main character's name. Those who know me - do not be freaked! I just couldn't think of any other name at the moment....Plus I didn't want to have my real name. I will probably only mention my Kid's names as real, even use my husband's video game character's name...It's easier that way...