COLUMN: The agitation of ignorance

Don Norvell

I have this reoccurring daydream.

I may be teaching a class, sitting at home or some other random task when a bunch of FBI agents kidnap me.

They kidnap me and offer me a job.

A special job!

This job gives me high level clearance to classified materials.

How cool would that be?

I would finally know who really shot JFK and why.

I could learn the truth about Roswell.

I would even know if there was any exigency requiring us to attack Saddam Hussein.

Unlike the pompous idiots elsewhere in the media, I freely acknowledge that I do not have the privileged access which allows me to make a truly intelligent, informed decision.

In order to protect the agents risking their lives to give our country advanced notice of pending attacks, it is absolutely necessary to classify records of their activity. However, I am still extremely annoyed that I cannot analyze the issue.

Domestic issues are nice. Government agencies and private institutions are constantly compiling and reporting data on how useless government programs are. The tremendous wealth of available information can keep political junkies like me busy for decades.

War is precisely the opposite. Since little important information is made public, nobody, except maybe an anarchist, can intelligently defend his position.

It is easy to protest war from the soothing ignorance of being a civilian. You ignore the existence of classified records and pretend the public record is all there is.

How blissful!

The only people who truly know if the war is justified are the president, vice president, members of congressional intelligence committees, high ranking military personnel and one conspiracy theorist whom no one will believe.

The best that you and I can do is hope and pray that war is the one issue about which politicians will not lie. I am well aware of how frightening that statement is, but unless you would rather die than impose the slightest harm upon another person, your lack of knowledge preemptively nullifies any moral objections you may have.

By admitting that war is sometimes necessary, you carry the burden of proof that this is not one of those times. Only those with access to classified documents have the possibility of meeting that burden.

Unless some CIA agent starts sending me secret documents, I am forced into a state of reluctant support. My better judgment drives me to distrust any politician who refuses to repeal excess government agencies, but, as I have already explained, I lack the needed information to argue intelligently against the war.

What cruel irony that there remains one extremely important issue which cannot be resolved in the ideal democratic fashion.

What a sick joke that a nation founded upon distrust of the government is sometimes forced to do so.

Perhaps, that is what we get for allowing the same two armies of incompetent imbeciles to rule our nation for over a century.

Don Norvell is a physics graduate assistant and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].