04 September 2008

John McCain: Blessed by Misfortune

Pundits will spend some time examining his convention acceptance speech as well the should. It was remarkable in several ways. He focused on his maverick image, his non-partisan mentality and his willingness to fight corruption wherever it exists -- including in his own party. But I don't care about any of that tonight. You see, tonight John McCain gave his lengthiest description of his time as a POW in the Hanoi Hilton. And he did so with grace and humility: admitting his woeful pride at the beginning and how he eventually became a broken man who needed others to regain health and dignity.

I'm sure millions of Obama supporters rolled their eyes at the story before giving one another a here-we-go-again wink. But for me . . . for me, I am awestruck every time I hear it.

John McCain was shot down, captured, then spent a couple of years with broken bones that would never fully heal, subjected to physical and emotional torture.

When his captors discovered who he was (or more importantly, who his father was) they offered to release him. McCain admitted that he thought about it. He wanted to leave hell and return to the people and country that he loved. But McCain knew the code. He refused release until all those who had been captured before him were released and was rewarded for that decision with four more years of daily torture.

Tonight John McCain said that he was blessed by this misfortune. He explained how it transformed his world view from self-love to duty. But when I think of the circumstances I wonder if I would have suffered this "blessing" when offered early release. Would you?

God Bless America. And God Bless John McCain.


  1. Anonymous said...

    I think I would have found it very tempting, but I hope that in a situation like that I would find the courage within myself to persevere.

  2. Nikki said...

    Khaki, I agree! I was moved by his humility and touched by his honesty. He let Sarah capture the base and he appealed to independents and to me quite frankly. I supported McCain before last night, but last night I became an avid supporter. He is far more authentic than his opponent. :)N

  3. Rick Frea said...

    I think that before this speech, many people thougt his slogan, "country first" was a bash at Obama, who clearly doesn't put his country first. However, by telling this story the way he did, he clearly showed that he truly does put his country first. He is his country.