Monday, March 02, 2009

In the matter of Paul Harvey

Paul Harvey, the radio legend, died over the week, as you know.

When anyone dies, the temptation is emphasize the good and soft-peddle the not-so-good.

J.D. Allen, a Vietnam vet who writes the Mouth of the Brazos blog out west o' the river, resists the temptation in this post:

I remember Paul Harvey, too. I remember how pro-Vietnam war he was. I remember his ranting and raving about how we were doing such a fantastic job, saving the Vietnamese, fighting for freedom and if you weren’t pro-Vietnam-war you weren’t worthy to be an American. I remember hearing him spouting that bullshit on the radio every time he came on. (Good AM radio stations were few and far between in the daylight hours in 1960’s Magnolia, Arkansas, so we were a bit limited. WLS and WNOE at night. FM? Forget it, even after it came around.) Yeah, he was a stone hawk, all right. After I got back from Nam I could not stand to listen to him, because then I knew without doubt that he had no fucking idea what he was talking about. Then, one of his or his relative's kids got KIA, or WIA. Or maybe it was a close friend’s kid. I don’t remember that. What I do remember is his conversion. Suddenly, it didn’t seem like all that good an idea to be over there at all. He completely switched sides. Changing your mind is fine - it's WHY you change your mind that matters. Long as it wasn’t somebody he cared about getting maimed or killed, it was fine, heroic, necessary. Well, fuck him. And now you know the rest of the story.


Anonymous said...

Now, EVERYbody can hate me. But that's okay.


radioisfree said...

does anybody remember when harvey stopped saying "page two," and began to use, "now for the rest of the story?"