This is a repost from last year … I wish I could say that a lot of the frustration I had last year was gone, and that the bright shiny promise of change had fixed our nation’s ills … but I can’t. Incremental change is frustrating. At least we ‘re not torturing people anymore.
Seriously, if Al Qaeda ever starts making cheap, dependable cars or electronics, I think the collective GOP head will explode.
WWII pulled America out of a deep depression, both financially and emotionally. 9/11, at the hands of the Chickenhawk GOP, drove us into one. This is just my humble opinion, but, America used to be a lot better at this World War thing. When America joined a World War … the World won, as it were.
This time around, when we had so many friends and advantages, American leadership gathered in a circle and fired inward, calling it patriotism.
Patriotism in WWII was different: it had meaning. Recycling, Victory Gardens, volunteerism and community all had meaning. They were sacrifice. Now, sadly, it seems that war is just a bumper sticker; morality is something pawned to pay for mercenary outfits and patriotism becomes the false bleating of the the despot and the Republican.
Look at the way that Republicans have treated veterans, the military and America. Observe that, in the Utah Delegation, Democrat Jim Matheson was the only one calling for more and better armor and weapons, while his Republican colleagues were calling everyone anti-American for raising the volume on our cynicism., wrapping themselves in the flag and shitting on the troops. When Congress took a vote to keep troops stateside a little longer between tours, it was Republicans that defeated the bill. When Democrats talked about withdrawal and how to best leave Iraq prepared for us to go – they were called defeatist, and worse.
Most importantly – When Truman had his committee, investigating and prosecuting war profiteers, con men and corrupt public officials, he got the job done. Now we can’t find enough politicians, Republican or Democrat, brave or ethical enough to follow in his footsteps and provide the oversight that they are tasked to perform.
Walter Reed, PTSD, BlackWater, The VA, Forced retention, Guantanamo Bay, Abu Ghraib, Extraordinary Rendition, FISA, Illegal wiretapping, Domestic Spying, Torture, Suspension of Habeas Corpus: the list of diabolical crimes; crimes that mirror a lot of the worst of our enemy’s behaviors goes on and on with little public outcry. We are, as a country, abandoning all that has made us great because a handful of neo-cons grabbed the keys to car and freaked everyone out.
Pearl Harbor Day is, for me, a day of reflection. I honor the sacrifice of the men and women who came before me and acted with a bravery and a determination that I will never have to achieve in this modern world. They came upon a crossroad in history, and Displayed Americanism at its best.