The cover of the New York Post, featuring a close up of a soldier’s face, with a cigarette hanging from his lips, does bring the stark reality of war. The Post ran it with the headline ‘Marlboro men kick butt in Fallujah.”
You’d think people who were upset by it should have been talking of the horror of war or the stupidity of the headline –in the face of so many deaths- but no, they are wondering if the Marlboro people were actually using it for a marketing purpose.
“How much did Phillip Morris pay for the front cover advertisement?” asked a reader, thanking the paper for "promoting cancer."
Then there was one reader comment in the Post who went:
“Thank God New York isn’t occupied by terrorists. Mayor Bloomberg wouldn’t allow a Marine who smokes to enter the city.”
Is this a byproduct of the mindset of folks who (still) believe Iraqi terrorists perpetrated 9/11?
But back to the cover, I wish people would treat the soldier in question, Cpl. James Blake Miller, with more dignity than make him out to be a poster boy in some reality show. How could we explain this comment, for instance from a Rush Limbaugh listener, at this Conservative site, who seems to want to get her hands on him.
"Rush mentioned this pic, so I checked out the site…need to see if my B&N has today’s issue…that is an GREAT picture…if he’s single, women are going to be seriously trying to track this guy down!"
If you’ve spoken to the mother of any soldier out there, the least she would ask for is some respect for her son. Behind the grime, behind the cigarette, behind the tough demeanor, is a human being doing an awful job –and not at the behest of some tobacco company or some dating ring.