Cindy Sheehan has lambasted President Bush in sizzling, intemperate language. She has made political proclamations about the nature of American society, Israel and the Middle East far beyond the pale of American popular opinion. That's fine. That's her right. But she's not the person to be the poster child for the anti-war movement.
This has to be a movement of the right, the left, and the center, an open coalition of millions of Americans. It is time to bring Americans in, not turn them off. Sheehan had her great public moment and she has made a magnificent contribution, bringing an awakened awareness to the most crucial issue facing this country. For that she deserves our eternal gratitude. But if there's going to be a bus trip around America drawing support, there should be other Gold Star Mothers in the front seats and other voices heard across the media.
In the Sixties the anti-war movement got hijacked by the left purists. They thought they knew better, and they spoke louder and louder to fewer and fewer people. They are back again. They love to hear the truth mongering sound bites of Sheehan and shake their heads and fists in full accord. They would rather be right than win. If the anti-war movement can't begin to speak in a language that most Americans grasp, they may once again have their way.