- Bowdlerization and Critical Research Failure: Brian's line after Ida tells him that Kevin was wrong to desert his post in Iraq is "Well, you're just a dumb tranny" in the DVD version. On TV, the line is "Well, you're a dumb drag queen." A drag queen and a tranny (transsexual) are not the same thing, even though they're both in the LGBT spectrum. A drag queen is a man (a homosexual one, hence the "queen" partnote ) who dresses in an exaggerated feminine manner. A transsexual (specifically a male-to-female one) gets surgery done to be a woman. However, this can be excused as social ignorance on Brian's part and the fact that the latter word has come to be used disparagingly against transsexuals and Fox may have requested a less harsh alternative to the original line, as they have before.
- Just Following Orders: Ida believes a good soldier should always do this.
- No Sympathy: Brian thinks Ida should understand Kevin's reason for deserting. She doesn't, and wouldn't have done the same. She tells him that desertion is wrong, plain and simple. In Quagmire's case, he's racist against Middle-East ever since 9/11.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Both Kevin and Joe had reasons for disobeying the law. Lampshaded by Kevin."You knew what your duty said what you were supposed to do, but instead, you did what you thought was right."
- All in the Family: A remarkably similar situation – a draft dodger who was living in Canada, to escape prosecution for ignoring his notice to report for duty and fight in the Vietnam War - was shown on a Holiday Episode, that being that series' 1976 Christmas Episode "The Draft Dodger." Like Family Guy's "Thanksgiving," the guest character is able to keep hold of his secret but as another character begins asking questions the truth slowly is revealed, leading to anger, disgust and an emotional argument about the merits of said war and questioning its morality, before a counterpoint is made and peace is (somewhat) restored.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Peter asking to see Kevin's Purple Heart leads to the revelation of Kevin's desertion.
- War Is Hell: What Kevin believes. However most of them (including Ida and Quagmire) don't see it that way, and are angry at his desertion.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Most of the characters (particularly Ida and Quagmire) call Kevin out for deserting the army, ignoring his reason.