“Berkeley’s Veterans Day ceremony, scheduled for Nov. 11, was abruptly canceled on Monday because the volunteer organizing committee split over the political content.
“At issue was a proposal by the chairman, singer/songwriter Country Joe McDonald, to have Bill Mitchell, a co-founder of Cindy Sheehan’s organization, Gold Star Families for Peace, as the keynote speaker.”
That would do it for me. And so it did for the war veterans whom Veterans Day is supposed to honor:
“Edwin Harper, adjutant of the local Disabled American Veterans chapter, which has participated in past Berkeley Veterans Day observances, threatened that his group would pull out.
“‘They have the other 364 days and 23 hours to make their political point,’ he said. ‘This one hour should be reserved for honoring veterans, period.’
“McDonald, backed by other members of the committee, disagreed, saying that not permitting Mitchell to express his point of view would be tantamount to censoring free speech.
“Their position was that no matter what he said, because he was a member of Gold Star Families, he wouldn’t be allowed to speak,’ McDonald said. ‘I’ve been doing this for 10 years, and this is the first time content and affiliation ever came up for discussion. I was shocked to find this kind of narrow-mindedness in my own hometown, in Berkeley, the birthplace of the Free Speech Movement.'”
That, of course, is the same line the left is taking on the cancellation of plans for an “International Freedom Center” blasting America for Abu Graib and other supposed atrocities that was supposed to have been constructed on the site of the World Trade Center towers massacre on Sept. 11, 2001. Seems members of the victims’ families, like the war vets in Berkeley, didn’t want to have an occasion of memories and mourning marred by leftist carpings about America’s alleged sins.
What I love about the Berkeley story is this paragraph:
“Last week it appeared that a compromise had been reached, with McDonald agreeing to drop another proposal to include anti-war songs by the group Annie and the Vets.”
Well, that was big of you, Joe.