We are a nauseatingly celebrity obsessed culture. We tend to worship a group of people as heroes whose job, for the most part,is to pretend they're other people when they act, or to sing songs others have written for them. Certainly Michael Jackson was in a league of his own, in more ways than one (and not all of them positive). But the 24/7 coverage in just about every media outlet you can imagine has literally eclipsed news coverage of far more important events with absurdities such as the breathless announcement of Jackson's golden casket arriving on stage at his memorial.
And, as usual, some who've been given the short shrift are the real heroes this country should be mourning:
A day before New York Rep. Peter King called Michael Jackson a “pervert” unworthy of nonstop media coverage, the aunt of a U.S. soldier killed in Afghanistan on the same day Jackson died asked why her nephew's death went virtually unnoticed while the King of Pop got memorial shrines across the country.
"Mr.Jackson received days of wall-to-wall coverage in the media," Martha Gillis wrote to the Washington Post. "Where was the coverage of my nephew or the other soldiers who died that week?"
Gillis' nephew, Lt. Brian Bradshaw, 24, died in Kheyl, Afganistan, of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle. Bradshaw, of Steilacoom, Wash., was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division in Fort Richardson, Alaska. He was one of at least 13 U.S. soldiers to die in Afghanistan since Jackson's death on June 25.
Bradshaw's mother, Mary, said she agreed with Gillis, saying the nonstop coverage of Jackson's death has become "totally ridiculous" and laughable.
"I can watch the news many nights and there's no mention of what's going on in Afghanistan or Iraq and there's boys dying over there," Bradshaw told FOXNews.com. "Oh God, I can't talk."
In fact, now that the deaths of our warriors aren't useful for the media to use as a daily hammer with which to pound the current administration, it appears their interest in those we lose has waned quit a bit, even from it's former scarce attention.
Ms. Gillis has it right when she says her nephew's death in the service of his country went virtually unnoticed in the unseemly circus of the Jackson death.
Rest in peace and God speed LT Bradshaw. We here at Blackfive thank you for your brave service to our country and your sacrifice. We mourn your loss as we mourn the loss of all our brothers and sisters in arms. We pray your family will be comforted by the fact that the Blackfive community and the broader milblog community does indeed honor and appreciate what you and your fellow warriors have given in service to this nation.