Does anyone feel like they’ve been forced into a marriage of complicity with President Bush?
I feel like I’m married to a president I didn’t want who is waging a war I think is completely wrong while demanding money I don’t have to pay for a violent cause I don’t believe in. It’s like I’ve been abducted against my will. I wonder if this is how Elizabeth Smart felt when she was kidnapped?
With all the talk of regime change in Iraq, a regime change in America would probably please me more. The moral compass steering this ship is out of control. Day by day it becomes increasingly difficult to differentiate between the horrors Iraq has unleashed as compared to the horrors America has unleashed.
Our moral authority evaporates when we employ the same ruthless methods Saddam is accused of using. We’ve disregarded morality and dishonored our nation in the process of trying to impregnate Iraq with democracy. When our bombs and missiles land on defenseless people, women, children, elderly and others, we forfeit any claim to a higher morality.
The same rationale that allows Americans to accept civilian casualties in Iraq today is the same rationale that allows Saddam Hussein to accept civilian casualties is the same rationale that allows Osama bin Laden to accept civilian casualties. It’s an endless cycle.
Violent abusers are usually victims of abuse themselves. It feels awful to be in a passive, weak position and the abusers want others to understand how awful it feels. To get empathy, they lash out and inflict pain on other people as a way to redistribute the pain they can’t understand.
America is still hurting from 9/11, but we’re only creating more pain by attacking the Iraqi people.
We could’ve rendered Saddam completely ineffective through relentless inspections but we chose relentless bombing instead. It’s too late to put life back in the dead, but not too late to uphold the noble ideals of patriotism.
Refuse consent, withhold assent, with all your heart, protest, dissent.
I love this country, but how do I divorce my President? I don’t agree with anything the president is doing, so now what? Am I un-American? I’m a staunch believer in freedom and democracy, but my own emotional truth won’t let me tolerate things that shouldn’t be tolerated. This war feels grievously wrong.
Our government’s initiation of armed conflict threatens to hijack legitimate efforts against terrorism. By adopting a Might is Right policy, we’ve alienated nations around the world. We’ve divided our own country and others into a crisis of conscience. When everything that should matter all of the time only matters some of the time, it’s clear proof that something’s wrong.
Respect for defenseless people should matter all of the time. When American soldiers fire 155 Howitzers into the darkness of night with no line of sight on their targets, they have no idea who they’re killing. It’s only day six of the war and about 800+ civilians have already been killed or injured. It’s despicable.
A feeling of general doom pervades this audacious era of foreign policy. Bush is redefining what it means to be American: arrogant and violent. “The United States of Arrogance” has been tossed about.
At a military pep rally he sharpened his smirk on the heads of the troops and declared, “Freedom is God’s gift to humanity.” Would God bomb Iraq or any other country to avoid a “potential” threat?
The Bush agenda is just nationalistic arrogance. War is a godless territory where the only freedom to be found is death. These words are my bullets and bombs, my conscientious objection to the war. We should’ve sacrificed more for peace than for this miserable war.
Mark Twain wrote a war prayer back in 1904. It’s full of bullets and bombs for God-fearin’ folk. It seems appropriate to repeat it now. “0 Lord our God, help us to tear their soldiers to bloody shreds with our shells; help us to cover their smiling fields with the pale forms of their patriot dead: help us to drown the thunder of the guns with the shrieks of their wounded, writhing in pain; help us to lay waste their humble homes with a hurricane of fire; help us to wring the hearts of their unoffending widows with unavailing grief. … For our sakes who adore Thee, Lord, blast their hopes, blight their lives, protract their bitter pilgrimage, make heavy their steps, water their way with their tears, stain the white snow with the blood of their wounded feet! We ask it in the spirit of love, of Him who is the Source of Love, and who is the ever-faithful refuge and friend of all who are sore beset and seek His aid with humble and contrite hearts. Amen.”
Silt resident Bernie Boettcher’s column runs every other Thursday in the Post Independent.
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