Lady G., I daresay an opinionholder like Joel Stein, with the forthrightness required to step out into the light of public scrutiny, ought to be taken in the spirit that he’s given. It takes guts to declare oneself a fundamentalist pacifist. Taking ridicule from one’s own side is second only to taking a bullet from one’s enemies as the most courageous thing a true pacifist can do.
I suspect, however, that Stein is not really a true pacifist. I suspect his pacifism is a false positive. He would not fold his arms and watch a genocide, I bet. He might feel outrage. And how did he feel about Kosovo? The whole bravery of saying “I don’t support the troops because I don’t support troops, period” is, unfortunately for Stein, irretrievably tarnished by the likelihood, not disproven in his op-ed, that Stein rather appreciates the accomplishments of the Civil War, World War Two, and perhaps even a handful of other military actions, carried out by troops in the 1990s with only the best of intentions.