Here’s a topical Senate speech for you; see if you can guess who said this:
Every senator in this chamber is partly responsible for sending 3,000 young Americans to an early grave. This chamber reeks of blood. Every Senator here is partly responsible for that human wreckage at Walter Reed and Bethesda Naval and all across our land – young men without legs, or arms, or genitals, or faces or hopes.
There are not very many of these blasted and broken boys who think this war is a glorious adventure. Do not talk to them about cutting and running, or national honor or courage. It does not take any courage at all for a congressman, or a senator, or a president to wrap himself in the flag and say we are staying in Iraq, because it is not our blood that is being shed. But we are responsible for those young men and their lives and their hopes.
And if we do not end this damnable war those young men will some day curse us for our pitiful willingness to let the Executive carry the burden that the Constitution places on us.
So before we vote, let us ponder the admonition of Edmund Burke, the great parliamentarian of an earlier day: “A contentious man would be cautious how he dealt in blood.”
Actually, no Senator ever said precisely this because I changed the italicized bits. “3,000” should read “50,000”, “cutting and running” should read “bugging out”, and “Iraq” should read “Vietnam.” If you do that, this is exactly what George McGovern said in 1970 while debating the McGovern-Hatfield amendment. Once again, young people are dying for others’ vanity and pride.