I required an antiemetic to watch John McCain speak from the balcony of the Memphis motel where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. McCain’s pandering performance reminded me of George Bush’s theatrics on the USS Abraham Lincoln under a “Mission Accomplished” banner less than two months after the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq. It’s called staging.

For John Warlover McCain to campaign for the highest office in the land while standing where Dr. King, the preeminent messenger for peace, was shot is hypocrisy of the vilest order and underlines the depths to which this psycho manipulator will travel for opportunity and power. After all, in 1983, McCain voted against creating a Martin Luther King federal holiday.

To put it eloquently, John McChicanery sucks.

As the presidential hopeful told the booing crowd at the Lorraine Motel on Friday, “We can all be a little late sometimes in doing the right thing,” I wondered how often McCain has been anywhere near early or prompt in doing something other than the wrong thing. I think of the children of Viet Nam who were melted beyond recognition by the flip of a switch, controlled by the bomber-pilot McCain. Many who consider him a hero will say that this status is forever carved in history because when offered release from captivity, he allowed someone who’d been there longer to leave.

I disagree vehemently.

Certainly, it was decent of McCain to wait his turn, however this act doesn’t grant him a lifetime “get outta jail free card” That was then and there have been plenty of occasions between that time and now for him to step up. McCain says he’s evolved, but his evolution has an aroma of politics. McCain’s voting record and agenda since he was elected to public office have delayed progress for our vulnerable here at home. His civil rights record is abysmal. With a foreign policy that’s explained by bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, babomb, McCain would surely reinstate a draft. And he would bomb without remorse. Bomb because it just damn well feels good to be in charge of the devastation. Bomb simply because he can. Because he has created a legend in his mind called McCan.

As we reflect on the wisdom of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., let us repudiate the violence of John McCain whose presidency would take us deeper into the Bush/Cheney hole of hopelessness for all but those who profit financially from war. We must overcome. We must be sure that Sen. McCain becomes Sen. McCan’t.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at:






Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: