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(Front Page) IS LINDSAY LOHAN MARRIED? (page 12B) minnesota soldier killed in Iraq

The other day I was perusing through a copy of the Star Tribune, and I happened to notice a tragic and shocking event behind the colorful advertisements and front pages devoted to Hollwood break-ups and engagements, major league sports, and fashion trends. Another U.S. soldier was killed in Iraq, and even more noteworthy, the first Hmong from Minnesota. This was not the first time that I had noticed that the death of another of our country's finest, a reminder of the sacrifices made day in and day out by those on the front lines, had been demoted to the back pages. I made these same observations when I served as a soldier in Iraq, and when I got home immediately thereafter. The initial shock and repudiation has faded, but every time I have to scan the entire newspaper for the news that should serve as a glaring reminder to the American public of the cost of this war I begin to question the underlying motives behind the blissful ignorance.

Surely, it can be stated that the American public has a short attention span, and furthermore, a low tolerance for casulties. I would, however, like to delve deeper into this problem ( the aforementioned neglect of reporting on the Iraq war), and suggest that the apparent complancency on the part of the media outlets (who serve the interests of the American public) in reporting on the Iraq war is subjected to racial and class-based discrimination.
An overwhelming number of the members of the U.S. military come from the lower class of American society. In addition to that, the military has a disproportionate number of minorities among it's ranks. It may seem like a far stretch of the imagination, but it is worth looking into to suggest that maybe the public's apparent uneasiness with stomaching the casulties of their nation is based in other aspects (i.e. Vietnam), but is exacerbated by the racial and class differences between those serving, and those in power.



After class the other day when we discussed this entry, Jeff reminded me that we barely even touched on the most interesting part of it: the racial and class element. A Hmong soldier one day will get no attention, yet the next day there will be huge coverage of a white "typical Minnesotan" soldier who died. As you point out, there are a disproportionate amount of minorities in the military, yet so many public idealizations of our military don't show that.