Thursday, October 28, 2004

Is John Kerry a Dentist?

There was a series of Calvin and Hobbes cartoons where Calvin, taken to the doctor, learns he needs to get a shot. He is absolutely beside himself, and who can blame him? The doctor is a quack, etc etc. While he is blathering on, the doctor gives the shot.

When I was young, I needed to get a tooth pulled. I'd had the procedure performed before, and was aware of the novocaine shot coming. A shot of novocaine seemed to me like the most painful thing I could ever experience, so I walked. I calmly told my dentist that thanks, but no thanks, I wouldn't need to get the tooth pulled today. When I emerged from the office, my mom initially shocked how quickly it went, wasn't amused, and turned me around and I finally capitulated.

When you are a kid, you don't know how bad measles are. You don't know why you need to have teeth pulled. You don't know what any of the vaccination shots are for, but you sure know the shots hurt. I'm sure many kids would opt out of the shots if they had the option. The shots, as we know, serve a purpose that our parents and doctors know about. Getting teeth pulled serves a purpose that our parents and dentists know about. We don't have the capacity or experience as children to understand.

Going to war is hard. Going to war is painful. Many of us do not have the capacity or experience to understand why regime change in Iraq is important. We can't understand why a public debate before military action, passing some 'global test' for months before action, may do enormous harm. How many of us find it easy or would find it easy to even watch any of the beheading videos. They are gruesome, terrifying images, yet they are the reality of the evil we must deal with. We must deal with.

My question is simply, can John Kerry be a dentist?

One other thing...

I mentioned this before, I want to mention it again. Imagine police enforcement officers letting the drug dealers know that they have a warrant for a search, that they will execute in a couple of months. I imagine the dealer may clean up his house a little bit. It is reasonable to expect Saddam did the same.