Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Two conversations I just had in the last five minutes 
Guy in a Wifi cafe: Why do we say these things? It's ridiculous.

Me: What's that?

Guy: We issued a statement to Cuba that we'll lift the embargo if they release their political prisoners and legitimately elect their leaders.

Me: OK. Why is that so ridiculous?

Guy: How about we legitimately elect our leaders first?

Me: I don't think you can legitimately compare us with Castro's Cuba.

Guy: (silence).

Conversation # 2

Different guy: Did you hear about the Israelis firing up that Reuters van?

Me: Yep. That's what happens when you run around after dark in a war zone and point things at people. Those idiots are lucky to be alive.

Different guy: Huh?

Me: I would have fired at them, too.

Different guy: It was a missile.

Me: So?

Different guy: It was Gaza. Not Lebanon.

Me: Yeah?

Different guy: There's no war going on in Gaza.

Me: News to me. Tell that to the people who died there.

Different guy: Huh?

Me: Where's Corporal Shalit?

Different guy: Who's Corporal Shalit.

Me: He's the guy Hamas kidnapped that started this whole thing off. So where is he?

Different guy: They're not back?

Me: No. They're still gone. So if there's no war, where's Corporal Shalit?

Different Guy: They kidnapped him after the Israelis killed that family on the beach.

Me: (pissed off) (silent)

Different guy: Did you know about that?

Me: Yes, I do. I also know about a lot of pizza parlors, cafes, weddings, and school busses. Funny. There's no war going on in Gaza. So where's Corporal Shalit?

Different guy: Silence.

Just, you know... don't question their patriotism...

It's yours that's in question for questioning their assumptions and quizzing their knowledge.
I don't care about their patriotism. What scares me is that they get to vote!
I don't understand how you didn't end up stuffing their chai-lattes down their throats.
Well, the first one is a really great guy! I like him a lot.

I can disagree politically with someone and not take it personally. I mean, at all.

The second guy I don't know, except that he's got BDS. I've heard him muttering a number of conspiracy theories.

I hadn't boned up on the family on the beach enough at that point to enunciate why that story had been called into question, though.
The family on the beach was the one where Hamas men (rather than doctors) pulled the shrapnel out of the wounded before any forensic investigators could show that it was actually from land mines placed by Hamas to prevent Israeli landings. THAT was the beach thing. Hamas (and the media happily along with them as always) claimed it was shell fire from Israeli gunboats.
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