I just read a blog post by outspoken Canadian musician Matt Good, where he talked about the whole Greg Gutfeld fiasco. It’s a good look at why the government demanding an apology from Gutfeld and Fox only enables them, as well as mentioning some of the important, past achivements of our military. (Interestingly, he shows where the term “stormtrooper”, or in German “stoßtruppen” comes from; it was coined by the Germans in WW1 to describe our audacious, trench-storming troops.)
There was a claim by Good that the Canadian Forces needs no defense against the words of others. I don’t know about the reputation of the CF being able to “defend itself without a word being uttered”, but that’s because so few people actually have paid attention what the CF have achieved and the sacrifices they have made in the name of national and world peace. And a lot of the blame for this lies with Hollywood.
The thing is, Hollywood has never let a true story get in the way of making money. And practically every movie ever made in Hollywood in regards to either world war has been built from bricks of fabrication, mortared together with lies. These movies, always targetted at the more impressionable people of the Americas, would make you believe that the wars have always been nothing more than the USA versus the Hun, using all of Europe as a great battlefield. Yet this couldn’t be further from the truth.
The most popular WW2 movies based on actual events are the worst offenders in this regard. The case of D-Day, as explained by Good on his blog, points out that the real achievers on that day weren’t the Americans at Utah and Omaha beaches, but the Canadians at Juno Beach.
Probably one of the biggest problems facing the Canadian Forces and the incorrect perception of it by Americans stems from the fact that popular culture (or at least that produced in the States) doesn’t bother to credit the truth behind the events they depict, rather whitewashing it all over instead. No doubt this also harms its perception here in Canada, as so much of our popular culture stems from American media rather than our own.
Greg Gutfeld is certainly an asshole, based on his comments and behaviour. But the blame for this fiasco isn’t entirely his. He comes from a culture where his slanderous and incorrect ideas are promoted as the truth by the people who run the pop culture machine. It’s those people who should be brought to task over this, just as much as Gutfeld.