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Some things do not discriminate

And one of those is cancer.

Of all the diseases to afflict mankind, cancer is perhaps the most dreaded of all. Perhaps it is because of its suddenness, striking down healthy individuals seemingly at random. Or perhaps it is the idea of your body literally devouring itself that makes many fearful whenever a lump or mysterious pain surfaces. I know what it is like to live in the shadow of cancer. I watched my grandparents slowly succumb to the disease and my father develop it as well. He survived his run in with "The Big C" but now he must remain watchful. I can not imagine what that must be like, worried that the next ache or pain could signal the return of a disease that claims so many each and every day.

Which is why I was appalled by reactions of some on the right when John and Elizabeth Edwards announced that her cancer had returned but that it would not keep them from campaigning for the presidency. Among the most vocal of detractors was conservative Rush Limbaugh who has basically accused the Edwardses of using Elizabeth's illness to garner pity votes. Such rhetoric is par for the course for Limbaugh since he has shown he is not above leveling attacks at those who are (at least physically) weaker than him.

But now that we learn that White House Press Secretary Tony Snow has also been stricken with a resurgence of cancer, I doubt we will hear the same sorts of vile and demeaning attacks of how "selfish" he would be should he decide to carry on in his duties. Such silence is as it should be. Some things do not discriminate. Compassion should be one of them.

(Filed at State of the Day)