Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.


- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Sometimes the hypocrisy is too much

Today I read a follow-up on Alternet, about Walter F. Murphy, and his story of how he landed on the no-fly list.

I try - you have no idea how hard I try - not to engage with 'wingnuts' out there, but one comment entitled 'hypocrisy and fear mongering from the left' set me off.

I suppose this is a sign of the times. So much is now broken within our government - and this war 'surge' is destined for an obvious failure on an epic level - that its becoming harder and harder to remain neutral, calm and reasonable. During these distressing and infuriating times, when lies are everywhere, and truth is hard to come by, it is hard to let a comment like this slide.

I wish I could... abstain. I failed again. I engaged:

The left engages in scare tactics? You mean... like those color coded 'danger levels' - that kind of thing? Or the 'we must fight them over there or they will swim across the ocean with their AK-47s in their teeth to kill us here' kind of scare tactics? Or perhaps the 'if we don't make sure Iran doesn't get a nuke - by nuking them into kingdom come - they might somehow overcome the ungodly defenses and enormous military arsenal of nuclear missiles in the United States and somehow destroy our country with a single bomb?'

Or did you mean the way your government uses fear -- say, that document called the "Patriot Act," designed to take full advantage of 9/11 and everyone's fear in the aftermath (the anthrax helped - that was a smart move;) by giving unprecedented dictatorial control to the Executive branch, allow for spying on all American citizens by listening in on phone conversations, reading and storing all of our emails, spying on peace groups with permits. And then there was the follow up "Military Commissions Act" legislation that removed habeas corpus protection. And of course, the use of 'fear' in our own hands as torturers... that should make us all proud. We now routinely break Geneva Conventions that have been in place since WWII.

Oh, and I forgot to mention - post 9/11, the Executive Branch immediately used the power they gained by exploiting our fear to launch an offensive invasion of a country that had no weapons of mass destruction - sorry, this has been proven so many times even Fox can't argue with it now - and at that time, no ties to Al Qaeda.

Meanwhile they somehow misplaced Bin Laden in Afghanistan (but really, he's much more useful and inspires a lot more fear in Americans when he's alive, doesn't he?) Do you really believe Bush wants to catch Bin Laden? Don't you think he'd be in our custody by now, with all of our great spy toys and surveillance satellites? If Bush caught Bin Laden, the American people might be less afraid, and more likely to ask questions... can't have that, now can we?

You speak of hypocrisy? I don't even recognize 'democracy' in this country now - and yet ever-dwindling 'patriots' like yourself keep spouting this outdated jargon about 'defending liberty,' and accuse the left of creating fear. Your government is all about fear - fear, fear, and more fear - and endless diet of fear and lies created to cause more fear.

Why don't you start defending liberty here at home for a change? Still too afraid of the boogyman? I'm curious how you can make it all work inside your head - that "we must fight them over there to keep from fighting them over here" kind of cowardice and still claim to be a fearless patriot and wrap yourself in the flag.

It appears the majority of Americans have finally awakened from their terror and have decided they have more to fear from their government than terrorists. It would seem that they are no longer willing to sacrifice their freedom - the freedom our ancestors died for - for a little 'temporary safety."

That you continue to defend those who attack our Constitution, our Bill of Rights and our real freedom as Americans proves one of three things: you are either ignorant of these documents and have never read them, you are scared out of your mind, or you've been brainwashed by Fox and have lost your ability to reason for yourself.

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