I’ve caught whatever’s been going around the city, and my body feels like utter garbage. So while my immune system fights The Good Fight, I figure I should concentrate my ire over being ill, and engage in some lousy, over-the-top, and perhaps offensive analogizing.
Strap yourselves in.
It was about eighty years ago when the world, on the heels of a wild decade of speculative prosperity, finally succumbed to the true fiscal reality. Markets were houses built without foundations; budgets balanced on the backs of imagined earners imploded, and with them entire governments. A blanket of shame and sadness draped civilization, and the only heads peeking out of the covers were those who feared there might never come another morning.
Somewhere in Europe, a nation stirred, driven by a man whose rage and bigotry was only matched by his gripping oratory; he drove millions, battered and abused by decades of poor gambits and failed Old World conceits, to abandon their sense and decency. Together they began fomenting a heinous culture of hatred.
To the north and east, a frozen empire unto itself simmered with its own conceits of single-minded glory, erecting monuments to a man and a movement we now know, and then knew, to be unsustainable. Knew to be suffocating to liberty and the true nature of Man.  Cut off by river and mountain and bitter cold, the empire lay tantalizingly close but showed itself an impossible prize again and again. Megalomaniacs through the centuries had tried, and failed.  Now, it watched the goings-on in the West with a wary eye. Would they be called upon to marshal their forces again? Would the madman who sought to lead THEM stop at no expense of blood or treasure to defend their home?
They knew the answer those days like their forebears did most recently decades ago: yes.  A proud to others yes, but to those listening, a weary yes. Time’s a tide that washes in the refuse and pulls away the sand, and the shore ages and soon is no more.  This most recent experiment on the national stage would prove unsustainable. But for now, for the present: yes. If they come here, they will be buried.
Western Europe felt the immediacy.  They saw lunacy; evil like none before. It seemed unreal, given the drawn pain and terror they’d undergone just recently, in a war that showed all that just when things could not get worse, they would. How, they wondered, could it come to this again?
Sick with worry and in no condition to mount a fight, they sought detente. We will negotiate, they said in Munich. We will acknowledge the wrongs done to you, and seek a peace we can all live with.
“We need breathing room!” they cried.
Those living closest to the madness quaked at the thought of such appeasement. Others were determined to deal for the safety of the world. They met, they talked. They concurred that to end the proclamations of destiny, and death and destruction for all who stood in their way, a sacrifice would have to be made.
Tomorrow would be different, they said. We might prevail under the old paradigm of empires and republican unions. We might also find ourselves at the dawn of an age where sovereignty is not challenged by the stronger to the north or south of us, but controlled within our people’s borders and no further.  They were not concerned with the shape of form of tomorrow, or when tomorrow would ever come.  They knew today was unsustainable. There was no fight in today; no fight left.
They proved to be wrong on every level.
Hate in this growing Western European empire was generational, and systemic. Acquiescing to their demands only fed their belief that fight made right, and invasion and outward aggression would get them all they wanted. Never mind the pain. Never mind the lack of reason. They wanted now, and they’d wanted it for years, and there were no words of caution. Indeed, propaganda led them to believe that they were fighting the good fight. That those interested in their own success were in fact desecrating their birthright, and the true way to attain it.
They were also wrong about the fight left in the spirit.  Those who found the aggressors’ punishment baffling could have fought–WOULD have fought–if the world had come together and defended against a tyranny that was unlike they’d ever seen before. Technology made the aggressors seem relentless, but they were not unstoppable. There were allies available. There was spirit. There was no need to declare ownership of a gleaming new civilization, which would endure forever. “Just please, don’t let them take our homes.”
But their homes were taken, and this new evil undertook the fastest and most terrifying campaign of expansion in human history. They did it in an ugly, brutal way.  They broke the peace that had been crafted to appease, and war happened despite the best laid plans of those who preached containment.  Then the growing empire sought to succeed where others had failed, and set their sights on the brutal world to the East.

Over the course of a few months, they had succeeded by great measure; while fighting raged in the rest of the world and glimmers of hope shone through the misery, massive armies convinced of their brilliance sought the supremacy demanded by their leaders, each mad themselves.

Then came winter.

Then came winter, and the empire of decades and centuries, of snow and domination at the cost of their humanity, defeated the army whose hatred was so relatively new, yet so chilling that it nearly consumed the world.

The next spring and summer would see a continuing series of reverses for the Western Empire, and eventually, after much rebuilding and much sacrifice, those who truly fought The Good Fight overcame the burning will of a people seemingly determined to leave their actions ruled from Hell.

Yes, then the fight turned to dismantling that empire in the East.  Yes, it took decades of sacrifice and near-nihilistic brinkmanship.  Yes: would that the fight were between their armies and those perhaps more deserving.  I might be swayed then.

But the writing is now on the wall.  To those who preach this… bizarre… kind of appeasement–indeed, some of these people are near-strangers but have my utmost respect, nevertheless–I’m compelled to ask:

Are you out of your MIND?! 

It’s NOT the summer of ’63!

It’s the winter of ’42! 

We can’t understand!  Nothing you’ve said has MADE us understand!  They’ve assaulted us physically!  They’ve taunted us verbally!  They’ve made clear their bigotry (the comments are charming), have recommended violence (“Someone should put one in his neck”) and have cheered violence (April 18, 2008).

You think I’m kidding about this?  I’ll even link to the Post, which I swore I’d never do.  Here.  Read it.  Read here.  They made me think a bad thought about Harry Kalas.  To hell with them.

You don’t cheer on a team blitzkrieging their way to a presumptive empire.  Then you’ve got two to deal with.  Simplest. 
Math.  Ever.

The Mets are our band of brothers.  In the last battle of the year, the opponents are those who’ve done our brothers terrible harm, and those who we’ve seen once (2000) when it truly, truly mattered.

I’m bundling up.  I don’t care that it’s seventy degrees outside.  Next week, winter’s coming.

Let’s go Yankees. 

Next year, after the guns are silent, begins rehabilitation.