Saturday, January 31, 2015

More Thoughts on Chris Kyle...

Read the comments on yesterday's post…

Given those comments I thought it was appropriate to make a couple of other points...

• I never said Chris Kyle was a saint. I said he was a hero. They are not the same things.

• I could care less whether Kyle decked Ventura, although in a perfect universe that would certainly be the case.  Chris is dead, and his side of that story died with him.

• I do not personally know Jesse Ventura and am in no position to assess his service, but IMHO by pursuing a lawsuit against a grieving widow he showed himself to be a man with neither grace nor honor. I suggest he be left, alone, to whatever shards of life he has left.

• I've never met a saint and I hope I never do. It can be scary and dangerous standing too near a saint. While heroes may kill people, saints have a knack for destroying nations, cultures and souls.

• To me, one of the peculiar pathologies of modern America is an almost obsessive need to destroy our heroes. Again, to me, and I speak only for myself and maybe Newt, it simply does not matter whether, say, Jim Bowie was a drunken womanizing blowhard dying of syphillis or that Davy Crockett was a massive fraud running from his many failures…the only thing that matters is that when William Travis drew that line in the sand, Bowie and Crockett were on the right side of that line. At some point we have to accept that we are all human — fallen, if you will — and subject to flaws, failures, misgivings, arrogance, cowardice, and indeed greatness that is inherent in the human condition.

• A few weeks back I mentioned a quote Stephen King's THE STAND…I have another one that's germane here: “No one can tell what goes on in between the person you were and the person you become. No one can chart that blue and lonely section of hell. There are no maps of the change. You just … come out the other side. Or you don’t.”

• I don't much believe in deconstruction. Were I to sit down one Saturday afternoon with a bottle of Maker's Mark to sift through the wreckage I've left behind me,  I'm not totally sure I could chart my way out of that blue and lonely section of hell. I've always thought Kris Kristofferson captured the truth of it in his little known song The Pilgrim Chapter 33…"running from his devils, Lord, reaching for the stars…losing all the love along the way…"

Okay…that's about deep enough for a Saturday morning…if the temperatures goes up 5 degrees, I'm going to the range, head cold or not!

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

As I left the theater after watching American Sniper I thought to myself how important it is for a country to have heros and to be able to honor them and recognize them. Not because heros are perfect, but because a country without heros is dying. Heros are important because they show us the best of what we could and should be. Not in the grimy details of every aspect of their lives, but in the shining glory of their exceptionalism.

Michael Bane said...

Well put!

mb

Steve said...

One of my childhood heroes, Gregory Boyington, said "show me a hero and I'll show you a bum". Heroes are flawed human beings like the rest of us, but unlike the rest of us they have done the extraordinary. Americans revere Chris Kyle. Liberals need to tear him down because he refutes their belief in their own superiority.

KevinC said...

One of the things you take away from Schindler's List is that Oscar Schindler was a greatly flawed man who did great things.

Does his womanizing and alcoholism reduce the impact on all those lives he saved? I'd say not.

There was an internet meme from a few years ago that I think works well here.

Choose your leader:
One candidate for leading your country is tea-tolling vegetarian artist who is staunch advocate of physical fitness, and is in a long-term, monogamous relationship.

The other is a foul mouthed drunken lech who smokes cigars like a factory.

If you'd prefer the first leader, congratulations, you've just chosen Adolf Hitler over Churchill.

Speaking of "saints",, show me a hero from the Bible who WASN't flawed. David, a man described as being "after God's own heart" ordered one of his top commanders killed so he could sleep with the dude's wife (and we won't EVEN get into the Abloom thing...) Samson? Horn-dog par excellence. Gideon? Coward. Moses? Tongue-tied.

It seems to me that in order for our heroes to be inhumanly valiant, they need to be human first, else they wouldn't be examples for humanity to follow.

KevinC said...

And hey, if Michelle Obama thinks it's a great movie, who am I to judge?

http://hotair.com/archives/2015/01/31/video-american-sniper-is-worth-seeing-says/

Anonymous said...

"I've never met a saint and I hope I never do. It can be scary and dangerous standing too near a saint. While heroes may kill people, saints have a knack for destroying nations, cultures and souls."

You lost me on this one.....

Life Member

George said...

I think with the moral rot in this country is it is really hard to find anyone who is truly deserving of the word "hero" today.

gunfreezone said...

To steal from Shakespeare, it is those "gentlemen in England now a-bed" who have the urgent need to destroy anybody who excels simply because they "think themselves accursed they were not here, And hold their manhoods cheap." They know that they do not have the fortitude to step forward when called, so nobody else should be rewarded when they become those common men doing uncommon things.

Awtha said...

hero (n.) late 14c., "man of superhuman strength or physical courage," from Latin heros "hero," from Greek heros "demi-god", perhaps originally "defender, protector," and from PIE root *ser- "to watch over, protect" (see observe). Meaning "man who exhibits great bravery" in any course of action. Sense of "chief male character in a play, story, etc." first recorded 1690s.
I point out the use of the word; i.e. a hero is one who does what needs to be done. the Dad that holds down 3 jobs with no time for himself but his kids practically worship him because they know he ALWAYS has their best interests at heart. (That aint me, but i knows one when i see's one.)
I'm not interested in the movie the same as i'm not interested in whats on tv except for a couple of shows on wednesday night. A moot point, wot? An interesting discussion tho. -- i also didnt "get" the saint correlation unless its being compared to organized religion per se. unless you are looking at the face of THE Messiah, saints & sinners are one.

Michael Bane said...

..."To me, one of the peculiar pathologies of modern America is an almost obsessive need to destroy our heroes"...

Peculiar indeed and it is a compulsion shared among all elements of the Left--1) target and 2) destroy what they deem doesn't meet their definition of a bonafied American Hero...In this case it's the late, great Chris Kyle/American Sniper that have taken Liberal Hollywood by complete and utter surprise looking to perhaps sweep next months Oscars...

Suffice it to say that heroes such as Chris are the total antithesis of the Left whereby Hollywood (outside of Clint Eastwood and before John Milius) looks to romanticize the likes of Che Guevera to Yasser Arafat....

My fear is that when Mr. Eastwood finally passes the torch, who will be there to receive...?

May God Bless Mrs. Kyle, her late husband Chris and America.

M.W.

Anonymous said...

Damn entertaining and educational this morning.

I think I'd rather read Michael Banes's blog than watch the Super Bowl by God!

Jr from pcola said...

MB
That was the best writing I've read in years! Yes I do get the saint thing, and I hope you talk more about this on Wednesday in your podcast

Thanks for your work-- it keeps us all together

RMCM(SS) said...

Well put, Michael. VERY well put.
Don't think I can improve on it so I wont try.

davebsr said...

No human hero is perfect, not Chris, not the Pope, not Michael, and not I. To expect otherwise would be delusional.

There are two kinds of heroes: those who have amazing success doing great things, and those who have amazing attributes that we would love to have.

All SEALs give a lot for this country and their professionalism, talent, sacrifice, and patriotism are attributes that I aspire to have. Heroic qualities.
Chris Kyle had all that, and something more: an instinct that made him deadlier than any other, and we appropriately love successful application of heroic attributes as a higher kind of hero.

JMKColorado said...

I'm surprised no one has referenced, "Let he without sin..."

I'd take Chris Kyle over BHO-bots any day.