Lord Vader, We Forgive You
I was reading the Opinion Journal’s Best of the Web post the other day, which is part of the Wall Street Journal op-ed page, and took notice of an Amnesty International poll they decided to reference. Here’s a screen-shot they swiped from Amnesties site before Amnesty pulled it.
The poll was designed to pit Dick Cheney against other “evil” tyrants throughout history to see who their readers think has the worst human rights violations. Problem is, they thought it would be funny to pit him against Darth Vader and the Hobgoblin, which some consider fictional characters. I will not dignify this with a 700-word dissertation asking and explaining why they didn’t list real human rights violators throughout history who have killed hundreds of millions of real humans, and not wookies. Nope, it’s not worth my time. But I will give you a look at a couple of the great responses the Best of the Web guys at the WSJ got back from their readers…
Some readers also noted that Amnesty had slandered Darth Vader. This is from Jeffrey Schallert:
Amnesty International is mistaken about Darth Vader. The war against the Wookies was begun long before Anakin Skywalker had turned to the dark side of the Force, and it was Governor Tarkin who ordered the destruction of Alderaan; Vader just happened to be on the Death Star at the time, that’s all.
Would I not be justified in wondering whether AI’s accusations against the malevolent Dick Cheney are as sloppily researched as those against the Dark Lord of the Sith?
Adds Brian Gates:
Amnesty International’s poll is badly flawed. It should include Princess Leia, whose refusal to negotiate with the Empire was directly responsible for the deaths of millions on Alderaan.
Darth Vader, of course, was at one time a realist, seeking to “end . . . destructive conflict and bring order to the galaxy” by stamping out all resistance. In the end, though, he decided to (literally) overthrow a totalitarian ruler at the cost of his own life. No wonder AI doesn’t like him.
Now that’s some funny stuff, especially if you’re a dork like most HDW readers. Oh by the way, Darth Vader won the poll and Dick came in last place, which is probably why Amnesty pulled the poll in the first place. There’s hope yet people.