I feel I have lost my country and I am disheartened by this fact. If we do not live by our ideals we can no longer claim those ideals. When our country, founded on the belief that our government is supposed to be responsive to the citizenry, allows that government to make decisions that violate the constitution, that violate the rule of law, that violate the humane treatment of prisoners, I fear for the future of our nation. When we violate the basic tenets of our legal system including the right to face accusers, the right to trial by a jury of our peers, the right to due process, we unravel the fabric of who we are as a nation. When we can say the behavior of our soldiers is too inflammatory to be seen by the general public, when we can’t try detained individuals in our legally constituted courts because our elected officials claim that our courts do not have the capacity to handle the charges, we unravel the fabric of who we are as a nation. When we say our federal prisons which have housed terrorists for years suddenly are not safe to house convicted terrorists, we unravel the fabric of our nation.
These positions speak of patriarchy and fear. We, the people, do not know enough to make informed decisions, they say. Our elected officials need to protect us from uncomfortable truths and make decisions for us, they say. We should trust them and not ask questions, they say. It’s for our own good, they say. It’s for our standing in the world, they say. When these excuses are given, when these explanations for why we need to give up our constitutional rights are given, we, the people, need to reclaim our government. We need to vote in elected officials who remember what we stand for. I had hoped that we had done so by electing President Obama. Now I am not so hopeful.
We, the people, can deal with the errors in judgment made in our name by former administrations. We, the people, can deal with the fallout of those choices. What I fear that we, the people, cannot deal with is any more hiding, failing to take responsibility for our actions, and holding ourselves to a different standard than we expect from the rest of the world.
If we are the change we seek, we must seek change that elevates our nation, that elevates the rule of law, that elevates humanity. Yes, these are difficult times, but our ability to weather them will, in my humble opinion, be determined by the quality of our character and the example we set, areas in which we have been woefully lax in recent years. I want my country back, a country based on life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I want my country back, a country based on justice, the rule of law, and due process. I want my country back!
If you believe in law, justice and due process then you know that the use of Guantanamo was anything but. That while there were indeed legitimately threatening individuals in there there were also likely many who were wrongly incarcerated by a “government” (Bush & Co.) who were looking for scapegoats in their phony oil war.
No one has been in a better position to give your country back than your current democratically elected president Obama. And everybody else in the world agrees.
Speaking as your closest neighbour and ally, I’ll let you know that Canadians are especially pleased with this result. Survey the majority of Canadians and – like Europeans – we’ll tell you just how deeply wrong your Republicans have been on everything.
What you have in America right now Deborah is the highest concentration of poverty, inequity and joblessness since the great depression. This was brought about by Bush and the corporate superpowers who owned his presidency. Not by citizens. By a “free market” economic model based on outlaw principals (i.e., just keep doing it until you get caught – if you get caught).
Bush and his friends exploited the trust of your citizens and got away with inumerable crimes – that have yet gone unpunished.
If you want to talk about “justice” and getting your country “back” then start looking at who got you into this mess in the first place and why they got away with it. Then look at Obama’s priorities and compare.
The real priorities are as follows:
– Jobs, economic stability
– Healthcare and social services for ALL
– Quality education for ALL
– Environmental and community renewal
– Sustainable industry/funding for innovation
The fake priorities (as defined by Bush and Co.)
– Terrorism (was never a real threat)
– Military industrial complex (the real interest of the Bush Empire)
– Corporate power
– Reduced social services and supports
– Steal from the poor to give to the rich
– Satisfying the “base” – rich, right wing, white, fundamentalist Christian Americans and their richest most powerful friends elsewhere