libertarians for peace populist revolt irregular books

How to Win a Pro War Argument

When Facts, Logic or Consistent Moral Codes are Just Too Tough to Muster


Those pointy-headed peaceniks are always up to something tricky. Just the other day, I ran into one at the grocery store. He was sitting at a table all nice-like, handing out pamphlets against the war. Chad was his name.

Well, Chad ambled up to me in his lime green cableknit sweater made from some kind of Guatemalan hemp or something and said, "What are your feelings about war?" I replied, "I sure do think it's a good thing for us to be doing right now." Chad smiled at me and said right back, "Now, why do you think that?"

Well, darn it to the bridge and back, the chump had me stumped. I'd left my Limbaugh Letter at home on the kitchen table, and it had been a while since I'd watched one of those Pentagon briefings. I just plum couldn't think of anything on the spot. So instead I just kind of said, "well, shoot" and stalked off. I could feel that hippie's smile burn into my shoulder as I drove off in my Taurus.

Now, some might say that if I couldn't come up with a logical argument based on agreed-upon facts, or that if I couldn't at least make some kind of statement about right and wrong that was based in a consistent moral code, then I shouldn't be throwing my support behind a war in the first place. Well, the hell with that! I know what I know, and I think what I think, and I shouldn't have to be able to explain myself to you, myself or anyone else.

I know I'm not alone here. Across this fine nation of ours, pro-war patriots like myself find themselves losing arguments against war because they just can't muster the facts, logic and moral consistency to demonstrate the righteousness of their cause. Well, no longer, I say! It's time we red-blooded white-bread true-blue Americans figured out how to put those anti-war activists in their place.

That's where this article comes in. Motivated by my own embarrassment, I decided to write a how-to guide to avoid difficult situations like these. When facts, logic and moral consistency fail you in your pro-war argument, just follow these handy steps. Now supporting a war can be as easy as 1, 2, 3 - and you don't even have to make a lick of sense!

Tactic #1: Use the word "American" a lot.

This is a great starter because it is so flexible. You can use it to identify yourself ("as an American, I stand by my beliefs") or others who think the way you do ("Americans everywhere support this war"). Add a handy positive modifier to elevate yourself and disparage your opponent without really coming out and saying it explicitly ("Tried and true Americans support this war"; "Those of us who are real Americans support this war 110 percent"). If you get desperate, add a negative modifier to tarnish those who are against the war ("If you aren't for the war, you're anti-American"; "You've got to support the war or you aren't a real American").

If you've got a wily anti-war activist on your hands, they may say that everybody who is a citizen is a "real American," and that nobody appointed you Grand High Guardian of Americaninity. Never fear, just move on to the next tactic...

Tactic #2: Call 'em "traitors."

The best example I can give you here is the pro-war response to Representative Barbara Lee's speech. You know, the one who said, "There must be some of us who say, 'Let's step back for a moment and think through the implications of our actions.'" (Step back and think? Yeah, right!) Now everyone is calling in to talk radio and calling her all kinds of names, like "bitch," "whore," and "traitor." "Traitor" is surely the best one out there, because it scares the living daylights out of people who are against the war. They get all sensitive and have to spend 40 minutes tossing out proclamations of their loyalty to the country and their love for America and stuff like that. It sure keeps 'em busy - you gotta love watching an anti-war activist dance. Plus, if you just say it enough, people will believe it - ain't that great?

Inevitably, some smart chick will respond to your "traitor" remark by noting that to be a "traitor" requires "betraying" something, and that calling for the cessation of dissent betrays the first amendment of the U.S. Constitution. She'll top that remark with a "so who's the traitor?" challenge. You know your answer: "you are! traitor!" Just keep saying it. "Traitor traitor traitor!" They'll probably give up sooner or later if you keep it up. But hey, if they don't, you can always try this goodie...

Tactic #3: Call 'em "flag-burners."

Another flexible one: you can use this taunt in the form of a noun ("you're all just flag-burners"), verb ("yeah, well you just go ahead and burn a flag and stomp your feet...") or modifier ("you and your flag-burning friends can all go to hell"). Don't worry yourself with the detail that the vast majority of anti-war protesters never so much as smoke near a flag. Truth doesn't matter here - just smear 'em while they're down. This taunt has the same advantage as calling them "traitors" - they have to get all defensive about it and that will give you some time to phrase your next irrational barb...

Tactic #4: Refer to Somebody in the Military Giving Their Life

If you've been in the military yourself, refer to yourself. If you haven't, mention your dad, or uncle, or great granddad. If nobody in your family has a military background, you can lie and make somebody up. Better yet, refer to everybody who is or has ever been in uniform ("Generations of fighting men and women"; "our boys in uniform"). Don't worry, they won't mind if you put words in their mouths - they aren't in the room and will never know the difference! Whichever person or people you choose, mention them and follow it with the phrase "didn't lay down their lives so you could spout your pansy-ass pacifism" (You gotta put in that "pansy-ass" bit - it really gets those anti-war folks mad).

At this point, some egghead historian in the gathering crowd will point out in a nasal voice that, as a matter of fact, members of the military are proud to say they are fighting precisely to protect freedom, which in the U.S. includes the freedom to spout pansy-ass pacifism. At this point, I suggest you retreat to the secondary claim, "[insert relative in the military] is making the ultimate sacrifice for you, pal! I hope you're happy knowing you're breaking their hearts, you flag-burning traitor" (see, you can combine tactics). Do so with care, however. Someone might have the unmitigated gall to point out that the dissenters suggest we take troops out of harm's way, while war boosters (many of whom are conveniently not on the front lines themselves) are eager to send soldiers to the slaughter. This is a sneaky Jedi mind trick. Cover your ears and hum loudly until they're finished, then adjust your tactics to...

Tactic #5: Call them Whiners

Complain, complain, complain! That's all these annoying "dissenters" ever seem to do! Well, call it like you see it and call them "whiners." While you're at it in this constructive criticism, it might also help to point out that the Red Cross is just "whining" when it reminds the international community that the U.S. is blocking humanitarian shipments. Another set of "whiners" you might want to talk about are the families of the residents of Afghanistan who've been killed in U.S. bombing raids. What do they expect for being born in the wrong country, a medal?

Speaking of right country/wrong country...

Tactic #6: Bring God into It

You know you have a direct connection to the Almighty Ruler of the Universe; share this knowledge with your opponent. After checking with God to make sure you've got it right, let them know that God supports this war, that we are "one nation under God" so they'd better get with the program, or that they should pray to God for American success in the war against those godless people (well, not the real God, anyway). Sing "God Bless America" with a hearty voice. Better yet, quote the Bible - no, don't actually look up any Bible verse or anything; that would take time and care. Just remind your opponent that God set up that whole "Eye for an Eye" moral code thingamabob.

Someone will bring up Jesus; they always do. Usually it's some part of this quote of Jesus from the Book of Matthew:

"Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: but I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also. And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away. Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."

Don't let this stop you. Just point out that Jesus was a commie, so who cares what he said anyway. Besides, he probably didn't really mean it. This brings us to our next tactic...

Tactic #7: Call Your Opponent "Socialist"

A favorite of mine. We have a few nouns in our society that everyone knows refers to someone bad, even if they have a hard time pinning down just why. "Socialist" (along with "liberal," "atheist" and "hippie") is one of them. So use that word, my friend! When bystanders find out that these anti-war people are really "socialists," they will walk up to you and thank you for ripping the veil of deceit from their eyes.

If "socialist" doesn't work, try "peacenik." It really means the same thing: "nik" is a Russian suffix, get it? Well, ok, the Russians spell it with funny-looking backward "H"s and "N"s, but you get my point. You and I know that all those people calling for nonviolence are in league with the commies. Or socialists. Or something like that. Well, it's all the same thing, right?

If your anti-war opponents say they aren't socialists, they're lying. All anti-war activists are socialists. Tell them you know they're lying, and you know about their secret conspiracy to make you look stupid. If you come upon an anti-war activist that admits he or she is a socialist, but says "so what?" then you're in a bit of a pickle, since a response would require you to actually have ever read Karl Marx. Just move on to the next level of anti-war argument, and...

Tactic #8: Threaten Your Opponent With Violence

A popular choice of threats these days on the net seems to be tarring and feathering, a nice painful torture that leaves the victim conscious enough to feel pain. Other great threats if you aren't feeling so mainstream: kicking your opponent in the groin, shooting them in the head, or drawing and quartering them. If your target accuses you of being unnecessarily violent, retort with "hey, I was just kidding, you whiner," and then threaten them again.

Now, every once in a while a stubborn anti-war activist will just refuse to be cowed by your name-calling, jingoism, religious rhetoric and threats. In these cases, you might want to try...

Tactic #9: Knock Your Opponent Upside the Head

You're on the right side! This means you can use whatever means you see fit to get your point across. So slap that activist silly! Try a kick while you're at it. Eventually, your opponent will fall unconscious - at that point, every one of your scintillating observations about the need for war can be offered without the annoying criticisms those "free speechers" seem so obsessed with providing. Since you are now the last one standing, you can rest assured that you must be right.

Now I bet some of you are thinking "now, you can't just slap people around!" or "that's a bit much, isn't it?" or "it's not right to engage in acts of violence against somebody who hasn't done anything to you!" or something like that. But hey, then aren't you missing the point just an eensy, teensy bit?

Jump back into Magniloquence Against War!
Return to Irregular Times

Irregular Times require talking back.
Give us your Irregular Retorts!

We are also eagerly awaiting original submissions of quality irregularity.