MSNBC host Chris Hayes apologized for saying in a broadcast that he felt "uncomfortable" calling soldiers who had died in combat heroes.
His statement is an interesting mix of apologia and liberal talking points.
On Sunday, in discussing the uses of the word 'hero' to describe those members of the armed forces who have given their lives, I don't think I lived up to the standards of rigor, respect and empathy for those affected by the issues we discuss that I've set for myself," Hayes says in a written statement. "I am deeply sorry for that."
As many have rightly pointed out, it's very easy for me, a TV host, to opine about the people who fight our wars, having never dodged a bullet or guarded a post or walked a mile in their boots. Of course, that is true of the overwhelming majority of our nation's citizens as a whole. One of the points made during Sunday's show was just how removed most Americans are from the wars we fight, how small a percentage of our population is asked to shoulder the entire burden and how easy it becomes to never read the names of those who are wounded and fight and die, to not ask questions about the direction of our strategy in Afghanistan, and to assuage our own collective guilt about this disconnect with a pro-forma ritual that we observe briefly before returning to our barbecues.
But in seeking to discuss the civilian-military divide and the social distance between those who fight and those who don't, I ended up reinforcing it, conforming to a stereotype of a removed pundit whose views are not anchored in the very real and very wrenching experience of this long decade of war. And for that I am truly sorry.
There is also a social distance between those who support the troops and their mission and those who don't. Hayes doesn't acknowledge that chasm, nor did he mention the numerous incidents of disrespect given returning warriors, including Code Pink demonstrating against wounded soldiers outside of Walter Reed hospital.
Halper mentions in his article that Hayes is an editor at large for the far left Nation Magazine. That explains his quizzical attitude toward the outrage directed toward him. He really didn't think what he said was all that bad.
But, it's MSNBC so what do you expect?