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Black Lamb

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Now in its 14th year of publication, this magazine was created to offer the discerning reader a stimulating selection of excellent original writing. Black Lamb Review is a literate rather than a literary publication. Regular columns by writers in a variety of geographic locations and vocations are supplemented by features, reviews, articles on books and authors, and a selection of “departments,” including an acerbic advice column and a lamb recipe.

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Archive for January, 2003

Cowards & penises

January 1st, 2003

Column: Don't Ask

BY LANE BROWNING

Dear D.A.
As political violence has become more prominent and publicized, I find myself really irritated at world leaders whose vocabulary shows so little imagination. Every time there’s a suicide bombing or some kind of “terrorist” event, presidents and prime ministers have to condemn it as a “cowardly” act. Maybe I’m dense, but what’s “cowardly” about flying a plane into a building or detonating oneself on a commuter bus? Isn’t a coward someone who runs away?

I feel the same way you do, but Bill Maher got pilloried for saying it takes more guts to smack into a building than to drop a bomb from miles above. The last two U.S. presidents have been particularly guilty of this repetitive verbal compost. Clinton used “cowardly” in reference to the Oklahoma bombing, the embassy bombings, and the 1995 explosion at the World Trade Center. George W. Bush couldn’t wait to denounce as “cowards” those who destroyed the twin towers in New York and those who punched a hole in the USS Cole. Bush in particular has maybe a three-page thesaurus in his head, but Clinton and other leaders should know better. Call such “activists” monsters, sub-humans, scum, dirt, slime, sickos, demons or even zealots if you wish; use “heinous” sparingly and “cowards” not at all.

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Posted by: The Editors
Category: Browning, Don't Ask | Link to this Entry

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