There was a thought provoking letter in the morning paper about the excessive media hype over the death of John Travolta's son. The writer pointed out that while tragic, it was no more so than the deaths of four other young men whose names we do not know. Nor do we know the names of their loved ones for they are not "celebrities".
Who are they? Congressional Medal of Honor winners with ages ranging from all of nineteen years old to thirty three. All died from injuries sustained in the line of duty - fighting a war.
The fact that celebrity news will always be a headline grabber, whether tragic or salacious, does not escape me. What does escape me is why there is so little due given the young men and women who have given their lives in our wars. I hope the Obama administration will allow us to see the flag draped coffins and the military funerals and the grieving families. Not out of macabre curiosity, but to drive home just how much sacrifice of life and limb this country has endured.
Thanking the veterans we may meet is a start. I'd like to think, however, that most of us will agree that the attention given the Travolta tragedy is not proportionate to the 30 second photo op of Bush presenting bereft families a medal, especially the Medal of Honor, posthumously, for the selfless actions of their loved ones.
Theirs are the stories that should be making the headlines.