I’ve lately been watching the excellent HBO miniseries Generation Kill, and this quote from the end credits of part 6 struck me as worth passing along (cut and pasted from this transcript):
Back home in the civilian world, a fool slaps a “protect the planet” sticker on his car, suddenly he’s all about the environment and shit. Don’t matter that he still drives that fucking car, fires up his computer and video games and cell phone every night with electricity made from nuclear power, coal, and fucking melted baby seal oil. Nuh-uh-uh, I got a dolphin sticker on my shit, so I’m all about saving the fucking planet. In our fucking Marine Corps civilization, it don’t matter what a motherfucker says. Only thing that matters is, dawg, would you charge that motherfucking machine gun when the motherfucker tells you to charge the motherfucking machine gun.
Not that willingness to charge a machine gun should be the sole measure by which we judge people. But it’s a good point about the triviality of a lot of the stuff we get worked up about.