22 April 2004
Twelve-stepping The West Wing
Gerri and I are addicted to The West Wing. We were late to the party - never watched it until the last six or eight months. We discovered it was on Bravo every weeknight, and now we're hooked.
It's frustrating to watch, because you want people like these running the country - principled, honest, driven to find and do the right thing even when it's not the easy thing.
In the episode I just watched, five US DEA agents have been kidnapped in Columbia and the President sends in the army to get them out rather than agree to have a drug mob leader released from prison. It was the right thing to do - you don't negotiate with terrorists.
But this show is pre-9/11 and the message ends up being that sometimes the means (negotiating with terrorists) is justified if it gets you to the ends you want (your hostages free). And while I (being a post 9/11 kind of guy) can't agree with that - I have zero tolerance for terrorists - I still can't help loving a show that has the president meeting a military transport plane at 4:00 am because it's bringing home the bodies of 9 soldiers he sent into harm's way.
Yes, it's television, and Martin Sheen is a political LOON in the real world, but damn it Josiah Bartlett is a Democrat I might actually consider voting for.
Like I said, it's television.