A mother's fear

L.A. journalist Mona Gable has stirred up a storm at the Huffington Post with a post reacting to her 16-year-old son receiving mail from the National Guard, the same week he pinned a corsage on the wrist of a girl for the first time.

I felt like I'd been sent a letter bomb in the mail.

This administration has no respect for families. It never has. Why else did Bush with the eager support of the Senate ban news photos of flag-draped coffins of soldiers coming home? Many of them as young as 18. Did they think we wouldn't notice the rising death toll? That families who lost sons and daughters would simply view it as the regrettable cost of war? Pretend it had all been a bad dream and then carry on? Not talk about it?

Bush likes to blather on about how much he "understands" what families are going through. Most of the time his posturing has been simply annoying. Another example of his Teflon sincerity. But last week in the wake of the Iraq Study Group's blistering report his pretense of caring hit a new low.

This happened at Bush's press conference when a reporter challenged him. I wish I could remember his exact question, and I am probably going to bungle it here, but it went something like this: Mr. President, What would you tell families worried about their loved ones in Iraq this holiday season now that the war has been declared incredibly dangerous and a disaster?


My son will not be joining the National Guard. But on Saturday he went through another memorable rite of passage. He went to his first winter formal wearing his first grown-up suit. It was pearl gray with tiny orange pinstripes. Trust me, it was gorgeous.

She's at 40 comments and counting, many sympathetic and some not at all. Gable has written for Health, Child, Salon and the Los Angeles Times, where her husband Joel Sappell is the assistant managing editor for interactive.

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