Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Ketchup and Civil Disobedience

If you've been following me on Facebook this week, you've seen a lot of talk about Ketchup. You're probably thinking, "what's the deal with Ketchup this week?" Or maybe you thought "people will make a meme out of anything these days!"

The truth is, the ketchup is symbolic of a much bigger issue we thought it was very important to draw attention to: namely, the flagrant way in which "journalists" have lately decided to write entire articles about military life that don't actually include military families. They twist and color facts and figures (in a vacuum, of course), and present them as though they are gospel, all without having spent one second talking to an actual military family about the accuracy of their portrayal. And they have been doing it all with a tone that suggests they can't possibly have a clue what sacrifice actually looks like, as though reduced healthcare costs (which are already on the rise, by the way) and an $800-per-year/per-family grocery subsidy is an excessive show of gratitude to a family whose soldier spent the year in Afghanistan (again), whose MilSpouse cannot find work because they simply move too frequently, whose children seem to have a better grasp of service and gratitude than half the adult population in this country.

You can read more about what I (and others) wrote on the subject here at MSJDN's blog (snippet below). Suffice it to say that when the Washington Post wrote an article citing multiple kinds of ketchup on a commissary shelf as evidence the military constitutes an entitlement culture, that was the last straw.

In what can only be described as a convergence of kismet and cosmic humor, it happens that today is the FIRST EVER National Ketchup Day. So we in the military community are taking the opportunity to celebrate via civil disobedience. Some are mailing entire cases of Heinz Ketchup to the Washington Post, although I kind of think that's a waste of a perfectly good condiment. MSJDN has been circulating our ketchup meme (below), but we are also (1) commenting on the original article, and (2) picture-bombing the author (@rajivwashpost, @WashingtonPost) by sending him tons of ketchup pictures over Twitter, hashtag #KetchupGate2013.

If you're up for a little civil disobedience today (heck, some of you are up for it EVERY day!), or you just want to show your support for the military community, take five minutes and shoot a picture to this guy. I'll even let you borrow mine:

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