Last night I went to Hancock, at Charter Centre Cinemas, where movies are still only three dollars, and hotdogs a dollar. I liked the movie. But there was something before that which turned my stomach.
I recognize that some people support the military, or like what we're doing overseas. I don't. I accept that others have every right to support any military they want. I just don't want to be forced to listen to the propaganda of a killing machine.
Right before the movie, we were forced to listen to an ad for the National Guard, that went on far longer than most ads, going on for at least a minute. It was filled with patriotic fervor, and in truth showed much of the good that the National Guard does, such as putting out forest fires and assisting in development. It also showed the National Guard in Iraq- but only the positive face of it. It didn't show them murdering civilians, soldiers, or terrorists. It didn't show the shock and awe of bombings of infrastructure and homes. It made it appear that the National Guard is a force for good in the world, and as soon as the movie is over, you should get up and join.
Again- some people like the military. I'm not quibbling over their right to listen to propaganda films. I'm quibbling over my right to not have to sit there and watch. I object to my being forced to watch something I find abhorrent and disgusting. I can't get up and leave the theater, if I want to watch the movie I paid to see- especially if it is an exceptionally long ad, and I have no idea when it will end. Nor should I have to leave.
We go to the movies to enjoy them, or rarely to be challenged. We don't go to watch what we find most objectionable. Not outside Clockwork Orange, at least. Not outside the free America I once knew.