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Cheryl Cook: General Milley, my hero

Cheryl Cook | Other Voices

There has been a growing anti-government movement in this country since the brewing of grass roots plots by wealthy oil oligarchs within gilded Tea Party pots. A pop culture celebrity read those tea leaves and turned politician.

“Drain the swamp!” he shouted. And once in office, invited international leaders to his privately owned Doral Resort in Florida to hold the G7 conference. What a deal!f It was almost like watching the president role playing in a World Wide Wrestling match. He hyped the crowd with inflammatory speech before any main event. Before the 2020 election he said, “If I Iose it’s because the election was rigged.“

Then he demanded a grudge match. But this time he team-tagged the Oath Keepers and the Proud Boys onto the mat. Combat-equipped Oath Keepers wore helmets and reinforced vests, and Proud Boys proudly flashed the White Supremacy sign with their hands.

Days after the election loss, Stewart Rhodes, leader of the Oath Keepers, had urged the president to call up the militia to keep him in power. According to court documents, Rhodes threatened that a “bloody, bloody civil war and a bloody … an insurrection or you can call it a fight” would ensue.

On Jan. 6, there was a bloody insurrection. It was waged against the government of the United States, which was about to certify the electoral vote in accordance with our Constitution. Rhodes denied they were there to storm the Capitol, “We were there to protect Trump supporters from Antifa.“

But Capitol police are not Antifa.

There is now a broad anti-government militia movement in our country. They travelled across the country — not to take part in the peaceful transfer of power and witness an inauguration, but to take part in an assault on our democracy. The most militant believe it will take a civil war to take the country back. Not an election.

How do you reason with people who continue to pledge allegiance to one man, and not a flag that represents the laws, courts, institutions and Constitution of our government? They chose a flawed leader in Trump.

My hero is Gen. Milley. Both he and Trump are Republicans, but only one is a courageous hero. Matt Milley, a four-star general and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke recently before the House Armed Services Committee. He was asked to comment on critical race theory.

Gen.Milley spoke:

“I do think it’s important for those of us in uniform to be open-minded and be widely read. The U.S. Military Academy is a university. It is important that we train and we understand. I want to understand white rage, and I’m white. What is it that caused thousands of people to assault this building and try to overturn the Constitution of the United States of America? What caused that? I want to find that out. I want to maintain an open mind. I do want to analyze it. It’s important that we understand it. Our soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and guardians — they come from the American people. It’s important that the leaders, now and in the future, understand it.”

“I¹ve read Mao Zedong,” Milley continued. “I’ve read Karl Marx. I’ve read Lenin. That doesn’t make me a communist. So what is wrong with having some situational understanding about the country we are here to defend? I personally find it offensive that we are accusing the U.S. military — our general officers, our commissioned and non-commissioned — of being ‘woke’ or something else because we’re studying some theories that are out there while calling out those who have criticized military officials as ‘woke’ for entertaining the theory based on the idea that systemic racism exists in America.”

“(Critical race theory) was started at Harvard Law School years ago and proposed that there were laws in the United States prior to the Civil War that led to a power differential with African Americans that were three-quarters of a human being when this country was formed,“ said Milley. ”We had a Civil War and an Emancipation Proclamation to change it. We brought it up in the Civil Rights Act. It took another 100 years to change that. I do want to know. I respect your service and we’re both Green Berets, but I want to know. It matters to the discipline and cohesion of this military.“

It matters to the discipline and cohesion of this country. To hide our history is to reshackle us and constrain all the progress we have made in our pursuit of justice and equality over generations. Thank you, sir! The founding fathers of our nation take their tri-cornered hats off to you!

Cheryl Cook lives in Penn Valley.

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