Ben Long's Argument Against Euthanasia

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mirror was gone. Smashed to pieces. The entire room reeked with the smell of cigarettes and vomit. There were glasses, beer and whisky bottles smashed all over the floor. The piano we had just managed to get from Tokyo lay in pieces on the floor. It had been totally destroyed. We were told that the drunks, led by Lt. Colonel Ben Long, were the ones who did all the damage. I had recognized Ben as a simple “red-neck, but I really couldn’t begin to understand how anyone could be involved in that kind of mindless, wanton destruction of a pleasant facility like our Club–one that we all used and enjoyed every day. It staggered my imagination. And Ben was one of our new regular Air Force Officer 's too. I wondered what had ever happened to the court…show more content…
We had a great conversation about the pros and cons of euthanasia as we ate. Seymour was against it on what he called “ethical” grounds. I argued for it on what I called “rational” grounds. I said that I would much rather be a dead ex- sentient person than a miserable living vegetable. After breakfast, we carried our discussion with us all the way over to headquarters as we walked together to our respective offices. I worked in my office all day, part of the time on the Wing History and the rest on reports and speeches for “Gabby”. I had never seen the people in the 51st Wing more hung-over than they were today. ________________________________________________ I flew the late mission as “Tiger Spare” up to the Chongchon River. There were no MiGs up, and I landed at 1810. I had dinner tonight with Mouth and Yaney, then wrote a letter to the folks and read. I told dad that I was really surprised to hear that he had been in favor of me accepting the job as aide to General Barcus, especially since it would have meant that I would have had to stay in Korea until next May. He said that I would be passing up a great career opportunity if I didn 't take the job, but he couldn’t fool me--I knew he just wanted me to stop flying combat missions. He was afraid his little boy would get killed.…show more content…
I was shocked to hear a super macho man like Don Adams openly acknowledge any affection for another man. Absolutely shocked. It was as though at the end of a movie, John Wayne had broken down and told Ward Bond that he loved him. And, I was pleased to see that Don had become secure enough in his masculinity, comfortable enough in his own skin and was enough in touch with his emotional inner self that he could–momentarily at least--be honest with respect to his affection for another man. ________________________________________________ Time was marching on. We had a new officer assigned to the 51st Wing today. A Lt. Colonel Fred LeFebre. He took Major Sullivan’s position as Wing Deputy for Operations, and that made him my new boss. From what I had seen of him so far he appeared to be an exceptionally sharp officer and a real nice guy. ________________________________________________ I flew the early mission as Wolf #2 on Colonel Clay Tice’s wing. Courtney Broussard led the Element and Lt. Brietenstein was on his wing. It was my 68th mission. We made a few futile attempts at "bounces" on MiGs in the Mizu area, and, on several occasions, managed to avoid letting MiGs that had started in on us get within firing range. No one on either side was able to get off any shots. Captain Willy Williams of the 25th got a MiG today and Lt. Kepner had a damaged. We heard that the 4th Wing got two kills
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