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  • Point Loma Op_ed

    By Chris Miranda

    To Ian McKay-a student who has probably spent too much time in his Marxist professor's study lounge-radical, Islamic jihadists who fly planes into buildings murdering 3,000 innocent Americans are no more "evil" than American soldiers killing the enemy in a war to protect the lives of innocent civilians.  Ian accuses American soldiers of murder.  

    "Where are the moments of silence for the innocent people who have died because of [America's] drone attacks?" Ian states in his college's newspaper. "Where are the flags for the estimated more than 100,000 civilians that have died in Iraq since America's occupation?"  

    His "America-is-to-blame" ideology is disappointing, because his life is owed to the American soldiers who laid down their lives so he could write his article (below).  Ian also needs to fact-check his statistics, because actual casualty statistics range anywhere from 5,000 to 50,000 civilians killed in the middle of a war zone, and many leftist websites use civilian combatants in their figures, inflating the number of "innocent" civilians killed.   Ian makes it sound as if American soldiers went out and "targeted" innocent civilians. This assertion isn't even worth a response. America didn't bring this on ourselves.  America and free people around the world were innocently attacked by radical religious extremists determined to wipe out God-fearing people-to not respond against evil is suicide. 

    Ian also claims to know the real "heart of God" by stating, "As a community and university that pursues a vibrant faith, we are called to pursue the heart of God. A heart I believe mourns the loss and tragedies of all humanity-not just those of our nation."  So those who mourn innocent Americans who died on 9/11/2001 are "godless," Ian?  And who are these Americans Ian insinuates are "jumping for joy" over the loss of innocent human life?!  After all, it's Islamic Jihadists who shield themselves with innocent women and children and train children to become suicide bombers.  American soldiers have painstakingly done everything they can to save innocent life-because they respect life.     

    We will never apologize for "Never Forget." To Ian and those leftists in Ivory Towers, remembering innocent American life is "offensive" and bizarre.  To Young America's Foundation and the hundreds of thousands of young people who mourn for their fellow countrymen and women, it will always be their duty to remember. 

    Chris Miranda is the Director of Marketing at Young America's Foundation.

    • Readers' Comments

    • For the first time (at least in a long time), I fundamentally disagree with Chris's article here, and believe that YAF has posted an editorial that is more inflammatory than informative, and glosses over the facts to make the article fit with its own agenda. Chris makes a lot of jumps between the article and his own conclusions, and not all of those jumps are logical. I was only able to read the original PLNU article in the photo embedded above, but from what I can see there is no sort of parallel drawn between US Soldiers and Jihadists. Rather, there is a parallel drawn between the human grief we felt at losing our loved ones in the terrorist attacks and the human grief felt by Iraqi civilians who have lost their (innocent) loved ones as collateral damage in war. I also was unable to see where soldiers were referred to as murderers. Additionally, I don't believe that Ian ever claims to "know the heart of God." Rather, he says he doesn't believe that God would rejoice in the death of any person, American or otherwise. " Further, the phrase "jumping for joy" is placed in quote marks in your article, and it is never ever said (or even insinuated, as Chris claims) in the original piece. And never, anywhere in the article, does it say that Ian believes patriots who grieve the loss of life on 9/11 are godless...what an accusation! As a former YAF intern and a participant in several YAF Programs, including Remembering 9/11 and No More Che Day, I see the value in these programs. I know that the awareness and emotions they trigger are crucial to the mission of YAF. However, I believe that YAF has more integrity than to misconstrue or misquote an article to make it seem more anti-US than it actually is. While I understand that this post doesn't speak for YAF as a whole, and isn't intended to be a summary of the original article, I'm disappointed by Chris's "creative license" in painting a target on Ian McKay's back. While I am whole-heartedly behind YAF and its mission and the perpetuation of conservatism in America and especially in America's youth, I think that there are more persuasive and accurate methods of spreading the word than by willful misrepresentation.
      Posted by Sarah W. on 10/10/2012
    • I am a student at the university where this was written, and I was absolutely shocked by Ian's article. It is disturbing how out of touch people like Ian can be.
      Posted by Jake on 10/10/2012
    • Sarah, thanks for your comments and feedback. My article is not an unbiased news report, but an opinion post. Perhaps Ian didn't use the word "murder", but he stated: "Where are the moments of silence for the innocent people who have died because of our drone attacks?" If that's not accusing someone of murder, then what is that? Wouldn't you say that that is a bit of "creative license" and misrepresentation? It's a flat out lie to say that America's responsible for innocent lives oversees. I think you are missing the point though... Ian's article's premise -- perhaps unintended -- is that people who engage in Young America's Foundation's 9/11 Never Forget Project are not after "the heart of God," because they won't mourn innocent civilians (non-Americans) who have died in the War on Terror -- like he is. Since when has he mourned the lives of innocent civilians? Has he set up a memorial honoring those who lost their lives? Has he joined the military to defend innocents from radical Jihadists oversees? How has he been a part of the solution? His article is a criticism of those who mourn 9/11. The reason why we have to remember innocent American lives is because most and colleges and universities won't remember 9/11 or the innocent Americans who lost their lives that day. Schools weren't recognizing this terrible day, so Young America's Foundation had to step forward and do so. Young people want to mourn their fellow citizens because they were innocent and schools won't mourn them. Remembering people who died on 9/11 is THE most non-partisan, non-ideological activity you could do. If you are offended by that, what won't you be offended by? In addition, much of his opinions are political anyway. Professors who "mourn" civilians lost in Iraq or Afghanistan really aren't mourning innocents, they are making an ideological statements against American foreign policy and using the loss of innocent life to advance their own political agenda. Look at all the college professors who said that Bush "cooked-up 9/11." My own college tried to hold a candlelight vigil, but used it as a political rally to say that Bush wants to colonize the Arab world. You cannot criticize students for not mourning innocent lives lost and then criticize them when they do -- on 9/11.
      Posted by Chris Miranda on 10/10/2012
    • Chris – First, a style tip: If you are going to criticize a column from a student newspaper, it is important (I would say essential) that you give us an opportunity to read the column in question. A scaled-down and wrinkled photocopy is hardly adequate – here is the on-line link ( I certainly hope that readers of this blog take the time to read the original column, so that they can assess how fair your criticism is. When they do, I think they will notice a disparity between your characterization of the column and the actual text. It seems quite obvious to me that Mr McKay was making a theological observation, not a political one, regarding our obligation to mourn the death of innocents. You are of course entitled to disagree with his contention that God mourns the loss and tragedies of all humanity, and that as Christians we have an obligation to do the same, even for those who were killed incident to legitimate acts of war; you are not entitled to put words in his mouth. Mr McKay may have skated close to the line of moral equivalence between acts of terror and the collateral effects of war, but he certainly did not cross it explicitly, as you have alleged, nor did he express any of the inflammatory anti-American sentiments that you directly attributed to him. I was particularly struck by your sneering dismissal of the sincerity of those who mourn the civilian lives lost in Afghanistan and Iraq, which is all the more ironic considering your comment that Mr McKay was presumptuously claiming to know what is in the heart of God (which he did not). I am not interested in further parsing either the original column or your critique; rather, I want to suggest that it is inherent in the nature of conservatism – and ought to be standard practice for anyone who is employed by YAF – to take care to treat everyone, particularly your ideological opponents – with a scrupulous regard for truth and fairness.
      Posted by Jim Belna on 10/10/2012
    • Sadly this article by Mr.Mc Kay talking about drone attacks and equating Islamic terror rooted in Radical Islam with American military operations to keep Americans safe reflects the scary fact that so many universities promote Leftist moral equivalency from the classroom. There is no moral equivalency between those who embrace Islamo-Facisism and go into bus stations, pizza shops and public places looking for civilians to murder and those who courageously defend our freedoms. The Fact that Islamist societies place low value on human life is sad but to allow terrorists free rain and not stop future 9-11s would be tragic. America is not responsible for those who savagely use innocents as human shields only the savage Islamo-Facists bear the responsibility of the tragic costs on everyone. As The Islamists frequently say they love death as much as we love life. I am proud of our military and know that they are there to keep America safe.
      Posted by Proud American on 10/11/2012
    • Thank you Mr.Miranda for standing up for America. Our people in uniform fighting the Islamist enemy are sadly looked down upon by some in academia but we should appreciate the sacrifice of those in uniform. Moral Equivalency is immoral no matter how some professors look at it and there is no moral equivalency between the West and Radical Islam which glorifies death and killing. Thank you to Young Americans for Freedom for not ignoring one of the most important issues of our day which is the ideological threat of Radical Islam to the West and everything we hold dear.
      Posted by Patriot on 10/11/2012
    • Thank you Chris for stating what needs to be said. Despite the Anti-American propaganda being promoted in some colleges America is not to blame for the wars and deaths. The blame falls soley on those who embrace Islamism and pose a threat to the West and believe in conquest based on Jihad as well as institutional Jihad. They hate America not for our policies but because we are not Muslim and don't embrace there beliefs.
      Posted by Thank you on 10/11/2012
    • I have to agree with Sarah W on this one. Chris Miranda has deliberately misquoted the article he references and he has drawn conclusions that have no basis in the line of argument. Miranda then tries to claim that his analysis doesn't have to relate to any actual facts or logic because he is writing an opinion piece. Go back to journalism class and rethink that last part, Chris. You are recklessly irresponsible, inciting people to anger and outrage over falsehoods you created. Can you please point to where Ian wrote that US soldiers are murderers? There is a huge leap between citing a fact -- that innocent people have been killed by drone strikes and other acts of war -- and accusing soldiers of murder. Ian is not implying any ill intent on individual US soldiers who are executing their duties. He is saying that he mourns for the needless loss of life wherever it occurs. Mourning that loss is not an accusation of murder. You seem to be very threatened by the idea that deaths of non-Americans are also sad. Why is that? Ian is not attacking people for mourning 9/11. Where did he call them, Godless? Once again, you make up an inflammatory conclusion that has no logical basis in the line of argument. He is trying to enlarge that very appropriate response to the needless loss of life to people everywhere. Nowhere is he saying we should mourn for terrorists, nor is he saying people should not mourn for victims of 9/11. He is simply citing a fact that people in many nations have been caught up in the decade long conflict that was sparked by 9/11. By the way, what is up with YAF these days? Attacking Point Loma Nazarene and Azusa Pacific in the same week? Is it war on conservative Christian colleges week, or what? YAF has just been making up facts to try to create the illusion that APU and PLN are "liberal." There is a difference between having faith-based reasons for what these institutions believe and do and being liberal. It seems YAF thinks anyone who does not bow before every idea that comes from a YAF member must be an Islamo-fascist anti-American. Sometimes, YAF just gets it wrong -- like Chris did in his analysis of the article. And that is exactly why YAF is bad for campuses. They can't engage in an academic dialogue based upon facts and logic, because their entire existence is predicated upon the illusion of being persecuted. YAF is looking for enemies where there are none. Seriously, YAF is attacking some of the most conservative colleges in the nation. Really, YAF is only interested in promoting YAF. Conservatism has nothing to do with it.
      Posted by Allen on 10/11/2012
    • I'll try to respond to both Allen and Jim here. Allen and Jim, This is what Ian's article begins with: "This was a day when American soldiers placed an explosive device outside a “suspicious” residence in northern Iraq. By 6 a.m., a ten-year-old girl and a one-year-old boy were dead — killed while they slept. They have parents who still mourn their loss and a God devastated by the killing of his beautiful creation." Shall I go on, Jim and Allen? Ian also states,, "It breaks for the mothers that weep for their daughters who were raped by occupation troops too disassociated with reality to understand the pain they were causing." I didn't even bring up rape, but I just saw this now. Should I keep going Allen and Jim or are you guys still going to argue about my journalism "techniques?" Ian goes on: "It breaks for the children that have become orphans because of miscalculated bombings. It breaks for Muslims, both here and abroad, who have suffered persecution and hate crimes." This isn't a theological article on God and suffering -- we can have that debate legitimately. This is a disgusting article attacking American troops and accusing them of hate crimes, rape, murder--evil acts. I don't accept your premise and underlying accusation. Americans are not responsible for the loss of innocents oversees...American soldiers respect innocent life, radical Islamists do not. Radical Islamists oversees brought any and all loss of innocent life on, and yes, we do mourn that just as much as we mourn the loss of our own citizens. American students who remember 9/11 respect all innocent lives. Who are these Americans you say who are NOT respecting all human life? Can you name just one? When did I say that I did not mourn for the loss of innocents in Iraq and Afghanistan? Students at Point Loma are SHOCKED at Ian's inflammatory article. I don't have to defend this, it's just a fact.
      Posted by Chris Miranda on 10/11/2012
    • And another thing...You said, "YAF is looking for enemies where there are none." YAF is "attacking some of the most conservative colleges in the nation." "YAF is bad for campuses," you say. Allen, some faithful college kids put some American flags on lawns on their campuses to honor innocent lives. A very humble, non-partisan, non ideological, sweet and innocent act of kindness. And some students at Asuza Pacific want to start a conservative club called "Young Americans for Freedom," but the university won't let them, even though they have 1st amendment rights to do so. Being this upset and angry over students defending freedom with these mainstream activities (9/11 remembarance, starting a club!...shocker) is like literally being upset at butterflies in a butterfly pavilion because they have the "audacity" to "flutter around" or "have different colors on their wings!"
      Posted by Chris Miranda on 10/11/2012
    • Dear Chris, First of all you lied about how the article starts. It actually starts of with, "Dawn had not yet broke when the operation began. The September sun was reaching the horizon and by the time it set the day would be marked by tremendous tragedy. The operatives moved swiftly; it was time to act. Innocent people were waking and preparing for another day of work, ignorant to the devastation that was minutes away. Sadly, I’m not referring to September 11, 2001; I’m describing September 11, 2005." Thats how the article begins, not the way you put it. Also can you give me a 100% proof that American solider respect innocent life, or you just assuming, like you do in this case. Just because Mr Mckay articles say, "my heart not only breaks for the men and women who died in office buildings and planes, but it also breaks for those two children and the thousands of others who have lost their lives because of actions taken in response to that fateful day 11 years ago. It breaks for the fathers who have held their bloodied and lifeless sons that were mistaken at military checkpoints for radicals. It breaks for the mothers that weep for their daughters who were raped by occupation troops too disassociated with reality to understand the pain they were causing. It breaks for the children that have become orphans because of miscalculated bombings. It breaks for Muslims, both here and abroad, who have suffered persecution and hate crimes." You are accusing these soldiers are murders because of what they do. Actually these soldiers are following orders from a higher power. These soldiers are not entering hostile environment with the mind set I'm going to 'Murder innocent people' no they follow orders and if they feel in danger, they assume they can fire. I assuming that there are soldiers out there who wrestling with themselves of killing an innocent boy, girl, and or family.
      Posted by the pooper on 10/11/2012
    • There is nothing controversial about Mr.Miranda's piece. There are not always two sides sometimes there is just good and evil and Islamists who look to kill innocent people and behead those they dont like are evil. Soldiers fighting to keep Americans safe who go out of there way to avoid civilian casualties have nothing in common with terrorists and Americans have a right to remember there fellow countrymen who fell in the line of duty without mourning everyone ever killed around the world in conflict.
      Posted by Prospective on 10/11/2012
    • Chris, now you seem to be misreading my comments. So, I guess that's just your thing. But for the record, you have to ignore a lot of facts if you think no US troops were ever involved in misconduct, ever. The military's own reports have found misconduct among US troops for killing innocent civilians, including the event cited in the article referencing Haditha. That's a fact, Chris. Abu Ghraib really happened, too. Those were US troops as well. Your assertion that Americans are not responsible for any loss of life overseas is factually wrong. Your assertion that no war crimes were committed by US troops is factually wrong. Those events are not representative of our values. It is possible to support our troops for doing their job correctly and bravely, while also condemning the infrequent but no less real acts that are misconduct and cowardly. Please understand, it does not appear that Ian has a problem with honoring the dead of 9/11. He just broadened that mourning for all the victims of war. I think it's great you honored victims of 9/11. That is sweet. And if you mourn the loss of innocent life overseas too, then good. You agree with Ian.
      Posted by Allen on 10/11/2012
    • Along this theme of not making moral equivalencies check out this link to this student article at Tea Party University. Article is called Opinion:Time to Stop Apologizing for America.
      Posted by ProudAmerican on 10/12/2012
    • I hate to add any more gross generalizations to this argument but unfortunately I feel I must point out that conservative, Caucasian, middle-class Americans ( the type I assume make up much of the membership /readership of the YAF) can be alarmingly ethnocentric. Critically evaluating the assumption that we are always right (always the guys in the white hats come to save the world) is NOT moral relativism as some of the commentators above either state or imply. I think Mr. McKay is simply pointing out that human suffering is not a "us" vs."them" equation. He uses some literary devices to grab our attention and stir our emotions (if this was his intent he was particularly successful, wasn't he?); however his primary intent is not to vilify American soldiers but to possibly give a perspective that goes beyond a narrow "American-centric" worldview. As for the assertion that Ian McKay is espousing beliefs learned at the feet of his Marxist professors, could it be equally possible that he has not spent all his time in the "ivory towers" of academia but has in fact done some world traveling and come face to face with human beings whose cultures and belief systems may be quite different from ours but who are still divinely created and who experience all of the grief and loss for loved ones as we do for the victims of 9/11 and for our fallen soldiers. I think Ian's point is that all are victims of the Jihadists that carried out the terror of the 9/11 attacks.
      Posted by A.Hughes on 10/12/2012
    • Hi Chris. My name is Guimel and I am a reporter for the Point Weekly, PLNU's newspaper. I was wondering if I could get in touch with you through e-mail or phone to get your version of the story. Thanks! you can click my username for my e-mail. let me know if you'd be willing!
      Posted by Guimel on 10/15/2012
    • oops, clicking the username doesn't work. my e-mail is If you could get back to me by tomorrow it would be great!
      Posted by Guimel on 10/16/2012
    • Have you ever thought about writing an ebook or guest authoring on other sites? I have a blog centered on the same ideas you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my subscribers would appreciate your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e-mail.
      Posted by Sawyers on 04/12/2013
    • hi!,I like your writing very so much! percentage we keep in touch extra about your post on AOL? I require a specialist in this space to unravel my problem. Maybe that's you! Having a look ahead to peer you.
      Posted by Everett on 04/13/2013
    • Chris, I can't believe how much these picrutes look like you. I thought he looked like Miriam until you posted these picrutes. Ian is adorable. I love the dimple. Does he have one on the other side of his face? I can't you,Mom
      Posted by Nicolas on 04/27/2013
    • Hey, Chris & Miriam,I am sooooo sorry I haven't done this earleir, but I have been reading about y'all!! Ian is such a beautiful baby, and I am so happy for y'all! I can't wait to see y'all -- it's been so long. Can I please get your address? Love,Connie
      Posted by Noe on 04/27/2013
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