Opinion

Not fun, not entertaining

Choosing to serve in the U.S. military and potentially putting your life on the line to defend our nation is not a decision anyone makes lightly. It’s a serious commitment that we should all honor and respect.

Watching a bunch of D-list celebrities pretend to suffer through a fake, scripted basic military training program makes a mockery of the real thing.

The new NBC reality show “Stars and Stripes” puts has-beens and wanna-bes through military-like training exercises, with cash prizes going to military charities.

The best that can be said about the show is that it means well. But in truth, it demeans the real sacrifices made by our soldiers returning from two ongoing wars with life-altering injuries.

South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu and eight other Nobel Peace prize laureates have demanded NBC cancel the show because it attempts to “sanitize war by likening it to an athletic competition.”

The Nobel winners went on to say, “Real war is down in the dirt deadly. People – military and civilians – die in ways that are anything but entertaining.”

Tell that to NFL player/actor Terry Crews, who said, “I’m so looking forward to taking on a real mission with real weapons and real ammunition.” And then, what? Looking forward to killing a real person?

Americans engage in war only when it is our duty, not because it’s amusing and fun.

NBC says the show “is about thanking young Americans who are in harm’s way.” It’s a glorification of service, not of war, they say.

And they do that by putting Todd Palin on the show? Perhaps, the network’s executives weren’t aware that Sarah Palin’s husband was a registered member of the Alaska Independence Party, whose sole mission was to secede from the U.S. because of a deep-rooted hatred of the federal government.

The show is really a cheesy exploitation of a horrifying experience for most, if not all, soldiers.

If NBC genuinely wanted to honor our veterans, it could have aimed its multimillion dollar production toward telling the stories of real-life heroes, including those in the South Sound struggling with PTSD and other after-effects. And it could have donated 5 percent of the show’s advertising revenues to those same military charities.

Thankfully, the show is so bad and has offended so many, that poor ratings will cancel it faster than a drill sergeant can turf a young recruit.

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