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Respect For The Dead Does Not Include Lying For Them

I think they’re having some memorial for John McCain over in Phoenix today as I write this. I say “I think” because I don’t really care when it is; today, tomorrow, ten years from now. What difference does it make? See, on a spiritual level, I don’t really understand all this massive funeral and honor paid to the dead body thing. It’s a dead body. The dead body does not care if the planned massive funeral ended up a ride in a pine box and a beat-up old pickup truck to some forgotten cemetery. The dead body cannot say, “Hey! This isn’t what I wanted!” Therefore, the only reality that the previously alive body could have affected on Earth was what that person did while alive.

A lot of people, including those who know better, are painting us a picture of John McCain that simply is not true. People may say, “We must show respect for the dead!”, but I disagree. Respect does not include lying about that person's deeds or casting that person as now a better person because he has undergone what must happen to all living beings on this planet. Click To Tweet Dying is a fact of life. It isn’t some great achievement. A king for all his power comes to death unwillingly, yet shall die nonetheless and have zero authority afterward. It is simply a quaint superstition that says we must tell lies about the dead and ascribe things to them that they never did. But the most important reason this is wrong is that it does no great favor to the living who suffered from the dead man’s wrong actions.

John McCain is responsible for fanning the flames of the Syrian Civil War. A war in which 300,000 to 500,000 human beings died. Ok, where is the memorial for them, I ask you? Who will remember they died for the ego of John McCain? Not only that, but nearly eight million people became refugees as a result. They are still living with the consequences of McCain’s actions. Consequences he never paid himself politically. So, too, are the hundreds of thousands wounded in the Syrian Civil War going to pay the price for the rest of their lives. How can we expect the rest of the world to mourn John McCain when we lie so boldly in describing a John McCain that never was?

If to “show respect for the dead” you must lie about who he was, then what does that say about who he was alive? How can we “celebrate John McCain’s achievements” when his achievements are not worth celebrating? There is nothing heroic about fanning the flames of a war where hundreds of thousands of people died. And then a whole new terrorist entity was birthed. The echoes of John McCain’s “achievements” will be heard for decades as a result. These are not the actions of a hero. A real hero does it with his mind, not with a gun. Or an army.

Look, at some point, we’ve got to start being honest. John McCain was not a “human rights champion” like the news describes him. That’s absolutely false. John McCain supported War. That’s where horrific human rights violations occur. How, then, can he champion human rights when he advocates for killing humans? Yes, you can have a respectful funeral without telling lies. But when you’re telling these lies because McCain hated Trump, who are you serving? The memory of John McCain or yourself and your ego? People need to ask themselves that question. If McCain was a Trump supporter, would he be lauded in this fashion? There’s another question people need to ask themselves.

One more thing I’d like to point out. John McCain got the best quality medical care through a national health care system available only to members of the United States government. John McCain could have redeemed himself somewhat if he stood up before the Senate and said: “Every American deserves the quality of health care I got. In my memory, I ask you all here—and the Congress—to pass a national health care system for all Americans. Just like the ones in Western Europe.” He could have done that. Instead, at some point, he made it clear Trump was not welcome at his funeral. And the Democrats confirmed a bunch of Trump-picked federal judges in exchange for naming a federal building after McCain.

Who are we serving here? The dead or the living? I would say neither. The government has pretty much brought back the old emperor worship cult of the Roman Empire. We are told absolute lies about former presidents, congresspersons, and senators to the point the government and the media are damn near deifying them. This tells us clearly they feel themselves worth more than we. After all, they’re entitled to the free health care they say they can’t afford for us. If McCain had been some working-class poor man with no medical insurance, he’d have died quite some time ago. Think about that.

People can say what they like. But someone has to speak for the living. “What about his family?!”, people will scream. Yes, but what about the families of those who died in the Syrian Civil War? How about the families without medical insurance because John McCain and Sarah Palin made national health care a dirty word in the 2008 presidential campaign? We’re still suffering the effects of those actions. Remember the whole “death panels” lie that was told in 2008? See, they tell lies. And their lies are what really live on after them.

“A story can tell the truth…but a story can also lie. Stories can bend and twist and obfuscate. Controlling stories is power indeed. And who could benefit most from such a power?”  ― Kelly Barnhill, The Girl Who Drank the Moon

Feature Photo Credit: “Respect” by Patrick Marioné ©2014

Jack Perry
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Jack Perry

Jack Perry is a writer who lives with his wife in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona. When talking about the ambitions and goals of the United States government, Jack warns: "Always Assume It's A Scam." Jack writes, bakes bread, and is a Path pilgrim and wayfarer of this world.
Jack Perry
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