07/29/2007 08:41 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

There are Obscenities and Then There are Obscenities

(Obscene: is offensive to morality or decency; indecent; depraved.)

As a totally untrained writer, I do have a tendency to go overboard in order to make a point. I am not exactly sure of what my point is as I write this, but I expect that is to verbalize my upset with a system that is complacent and accepts the continuing horrors of an ego driven president and war, yet goes bananas about sexual and language issues on radio and television. Now how weird is that?

Killing is obscene. War is obscene. Cruelty is obscene, as are so many other things.

Sex between consenting adults is not obscene. Nakedness is not obscene. Words are not obscene either.

What follows is a REAL obscenity. It was sent to me by the Father of a Doctor serving in the Middle East.

"I expected to work in an ER dealing with the occasional injured or wounded troop, as well as taking care of normal sprains and strains. Never did I imagine I'd be working in an Intensive Care Unit, something I've NEVER done, or that I'd be taking care of children nearly burned alive.

I think I've learned more about being a Doctor in the two months I've been here than I have my entire career (over 16 years). But this
experience is also the most frustrating. If the military wants us to
take care of the patients, then give us the proper staffing, meds, and the equipment to do so. Why aren't they sending more and better trained nurses here?

Why don't they give us the supplies and equipment to give patients the best care possible? The only answer I can think of is that our mission here is not a humanitarian one, yet that is what we seem to be doing. Our mission is to take care of U.S. troops who are wounded. However, those troops are flown to Germany within 24 hours of arriving at our facility.

Our patients will stay with us until we get them well enough to go home, or they die, or we need the bed for an injured U.S. soldier. At that point, we literally put the care of the civilian patients on hold, or send them to the local hospital where many of our patients end up dying from infection due to the primitive care given.

This deployment has forever changed me, makes me angry that the military puts us into this situation in which we struggle to take care of patients with limited capabilities and supplies. I wish the leaders of the U.S. could spend one night trying to treat a baby who has burns to more than 65% of his body, who doesn't understand my language, who has no family at his bedside because they have no car to get here, who can't cry, who can't see, who can't be held due to the excruciating pain of picking him up."

We have been at war in the Middle East for over five years. Are there valid reasons that we do not have an adequate number of trained people and equipment to get the job done properly? I don't think so. It represents another vestige of trying to run a war "on the cheap."

As with Katrina and its aftermath, we are unwilling or unable to get the job done, and there is no indication that we have the will or the expertise to make it any better. Our government is great at rhetoric, and fails almost all of the time in executing its word spoken at photo ops.

If a broadcast network or two or three or four had the courage to investigate and broadcast all of this stuff you can bet that the situation would change assuming that these guys in government can be embarrassed.

This is sad, tragic, horrid and OBSCENE.

Our glorious leaders and legislators have time for the religious right wing BULLSHIT while our kids and their kids are getting blown up. We are a nation involved in a bad war and every ounce or our political energy should be taken to end this horror, and while we are at it, provide our Doctors and Nurses wherever they are with everything that they need to care for everyone involved.

There are so many more issues in our country that need our attention, that to spend a single bit of energy devoted to the following is obscene and a tragedy.

WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- The Senate Commerce Committee on Thursday voted to approve two bills that would potentially give the Federal Communications Commission greater authority.

One bill would empower the FCC to take enforcement action against broadcasters who aired a single expletive, greatly expanding the agency's authority in this area.

Currently, the FCC policy is not to act against single or fleeting utterances of expletives on the air, as long as those expletives aren't used in a sexually explicit manner.

The bill, if adopted, would go some way to granting FCC Chairman Kevin Martin the powers he has long sought to take action against broadcasters who allow expletives to be aired.

In effect, the bill would allow the regulator to re-adopt its policy towards expletive broadcasts before an Appeals Court ruled the FCC hadn't adequately justified its attempt to change policy to pursue incidents of airing of single expletives.

Sen. John D. Rockefeller, D-W.Va., a member of the Commerce Committee, has aggressively pursued legislation to give the FCC more authority in this area.

"This bill is premised on the notion that broadcasters drop f-bombs and s- words with impunity, that claim is patently false," said Dennis Wharton, an executive with the National Broadcasters Association, a powerful Washington lobby group, who was attending the Senate panel hearing.

Shortly after the bill was approved, Martin's office issued a brief statement in which he commended the Senate Commerce Committee for recognizing "what we on the Commission and every parent already knows; even a single word or image can indeed be indecent."

INDECENT? The Martin statement itself is indecent.

This is sad, tragic, horrid and OBSCENE.

They are like many of the real Americans that I met almost 40 years ago. It was in the late sixties that my family abandoned The Bronx and moved to the middle class suburban Village of Ardsley, New York. We arrived in late August, about 10 days before the start of the new school term.

Ardsley was up in arms in that its high school literary magazine had carried an article written by a 17 year old senior describing his feelings when visiting a brothel in Bangkok. Before I went to the school board meeting called to review who to "kill" because of the article, I read the well written piece that did not contain anything sexual at all. It was about this boy's reaction to the denigration of women forced into prostitution.

At the meeting, many parents were in an uproar and wanted almost everyone fired including the school janitors. Many mothers and fathers spoke about their tax dollars being spent to support this vulgarity, as they vowed to shut down the publication. I wondered at that time why people were so upset about the incident, and now 40 years later, I still do not understand their intense upset.

Near the end of the meeting, which was then almost out of control, a young man stood up and asked everyone to look at another article in the magazine, and read a few paragraphs from it. The article was written by a senior who had interviewed his Father, a Korean War Fighter/Bomber pilot concerning his 20 years of nightmares and intense guilt concerning his role in the war. The boy described his fathers napalming North Korean villages, and seeing families run from a house he had bombed with their bodies on fire. There were men, women, and children that he had burned to death. He was unable to purge himself from this very real obscenity.

The people were shocked for a moment, and then resumed their attack on what they considered vulgar and obscene.

This is sad, tragic, horrid and OBSCENE

Everyone knows that we as a nation and a society are "the good guys" and that it is ok for us to kill or destroy whatever we wish because of that.

We apparently believe it is acceptable for us to have invaded Iraq , and while we are at it kill and maim a few hundred thousand innocents Iraqis, but it is not OK to show a bare breast on television, say fuck or shit as though by so doing, everyone who says or hears these words will go directly to hell.

I am ashamed that I have changed the "story" about the Doctor in the Middle East in order to protect his identity.



Norman Horowitz