This editorial was published March 25 in The Mesabi Daily News of Virginia.
To hear some of the protesters voice their opposition to the war in Iraq you would think by their words that they were being oppressed in some way -- that their right to dissent was somehow not given its rightful due in America.
How often have we heard: "We have a right to protest."
Of course people in the United States have the right to peacefully protest without fear or retaliation -- unlike the people of Iraq who would be killed if they dare raise their voices in protest.
So quit the whining -- no one has said that protesters do not have that right. But it also doesn't mean others need to walk on egg shells around protesters and bow to their views and be silent when they hold up signs, like someone did in Virginia last week, saying he was ashamed to be an American.
In the United States we also, fortunately, have the right to direct words of protest at those who protest.
It truly is a remarkable right of freedom of expression that we have in America. And it is a right that we have because of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for freedom from the days of the Revolutionary War more than 225 years ago to the war today in Iraq.
And so today we honor the 20 U.S. troops who have been killed in the war as of Monday and the 14 who are captured or missing.
Those who have given their lives in this conflict were proud to serve their country knowing full well that they were in harm's way and could possibly pay the ultimate price for freedom.
We should all stop for a moment or two each and every day of this war to remember those who have died while serving their country in this mission. And we should also keep all who are serving in our thoughts and prayers.
We should all be very proud of their bravery and heroism. And we believe anyone not feeling that way should be ashamed of themselves.
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