Archive for the 'Iraq War' Category

04
Nov
08

The Audacity of Hope

I’ve been waiting years for this night and I’m absolutely terrified.  I really, really want to believe that Obama’s going to win, but I’m afraid that he won’t and I’ll be crushed.  A world in which McCain is President is scary for me.  I believe that he and his party want to control as much of my life as they possibly can including who I can marry and what I can do with my reproductive organs.  I believe that if he wins, people will die from a lack of healh care and young women who have been raped will be forced to endure back rooom procedures or deal with the possible cconsequences of being a victim. I believe that funding for alternative education will be cut, putting me out of a job and stem cell research will be stunted, putting me out of a sister.

I don’t believe things will be perfect under Obama.  I don’t even necessarily believe they’ll be all that better than they are now.  But they will be better.  If we’re lucky, we’ll get to keep the civil rights we have and gain a few more.  I don’t expect to see a revolution.  I just don’t want to feel like we’re in a hole that we’ll never climb out of.  I need hope, and McCain can’t give it to me.

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11
Oct
08

Are Republicans Good People?

Partisanship has been a huge topic of discussion for the past few years, mosly because when Party A wants to get something done and Party B disagrees, Party A claims that they only disagree because of partisanship.  They don’t stop to consider that what they want to do is financially irresponsible or morally wrong.  The just think the other party is being obstinate, which is pretty insulting, but I digress.  At some point during all of this Us vs. Them fighting, some of us started to realize that there ARE issues in which the parties are diametrically opposed, and agreeing to disagree just doesn’t fly when legislation is involved.

But we all have friends.  And having made many of our friends before we were so partisan or found ourselves surrounded by politics, we sometimes find that our friends are of the opposite party.  Family is one thing.  You HAVE to love them, unless being around them is physically or emotionally damaging. But friends are a gray area. You want to believe that they are good people, despite their political beliefs, but then you have to ask yourself: Can you be a good person if you think it’s okay to deny someone a basic civil right?  Can you be a good person if you don’t believe that everyone should have equal access to health care?  Can you be a good person if you really believe that we’re doing the right thing in Iraq?  Can you be a good person if you drive an SUV or a Hummer for fun?  Can you be a good person if you continually ignore the fact that schools filled with minority students are vastly underfunded?  Can you be a good person if you think automatic weapons are fine in the hands of criminals?

So the problem is this: They think they can be good people and believe all of those things, and I just don’t. If it divides our country, so be it.  If it pits brother against brother and tears families apart, so be it.  But no one, especially not in this country, should be forced to compromise on something they believe in with all of their heart simply to keep the peace.  And they shouldn’t have to pretend that it’s something it’s not.  It is NOT partisanship. It is the difference between RIGHT and WRONG.  The Republicans are just WRONG.

22
Jul
08

And For What?

I have to send a special shout out to Daniel on this one.  Writing is a catharsis indeed, but we cannot forget to write what we should as well as what we can.  All the posts on religion, education, and politics mean nothing if we DO nothing, and most importantly, we cannot forget that while we sit in front of our computers in cushy office chairs surrounded by air conditioning there are thousands of people suffering IN OUR NAME. 

Our government is torturing and detaining people for indeterminate lengths of time without giving any reasoning, and they say they’re doing it to make us safer.  What proof do we have?  What can we point to as the reason for even arresting these men?  We make excuses and we spout slogans, forgetting all the while that people are suffering, truly, deeply suffering – and for what?

4,123 US soldiers killed in Iraq, 30,409 US soldiers wounded in Iraq

09
Jul
08

Support This Troop

War does a lot of things to a lot of people.  Some find a renewal of faith and others lose it completely.  For nus, those who have stayed on the sidelines and watched this comedy of errors continue year after year, it is impossible to judge the young men and women who serve.  You would expect that fellow soldiers would understand and accept the changes in their comrades as “part of the experience”.  Many become more religious, more patriotic, more etc…, but some do not.  Some let go of their deeply ingrained beliefs, question what life is all about, and change who they are.  This soldier did just that, and because the Army and his fellow soldiers didn’t like what he was saying, it caused a shitstorm.

Army Spc. Jeremy Hall was told that “…because I can’t put my personal beliefs aside and pray with troops I wouldn’t make a good leader”.  He was asked to leave a table at Thanksgiving because he wouldn’t say Grace.  He is currently suing the military, not for money, but for the promise of religious freedom.  This poor young man joined the Army believing that he was doing something good for our nation and its people. All he has found is that he has to defend his own rights.  We owe him and all the other true defenders of freedom a collective apology.

4,114 US soldiers killed in Iraq (apparently not defending religious freedom), 30,275 US soldiers wounded in Iraq

02
Jul
08

Christianity in Iraq

I saw a piece on 60 Minutes about Christians in Iraq.  Before the war there were over one million Christians practicing openly in Iraq without being bothered because Saddam Hussien allowed for religious freedom.  That meant that women could drive, work, go to school, etc…  Since the beginning of the US occupation of Iraq the Christian population has dwindled significantly.  A young man in the story told of how his family split their time at mass so that if the church was bombed, only half of them would die. The Christians who survived the initial religious persecution by the Islamic Fundamentalists have mostly escaped to Syria.  All that are left are the women whose men have been killed, the very old, and children.  They practice their religion in secret.

My problem with this story was the spin.  60 Minutes detailed how the Christians were surviving in Iraq and how their lives had been better before the US invasion, but glossed over the part where their slaughter was largely our fault.  It is true that had we not invaded, these people would still be living under the rule of Saddam Hussein, who had NO ties to Osama bin Laden or Al Qaeda AND allowed his people some religious and social freedom that is wholly absent from the Iraq of today.  Now that is impossible.  The militants have made sure of that.  Good for us!

30
Jun
08

You Can’t Have Him

I fully agree that this ad seems a little contrived and is definitely cheesy, but the concept is correct.  People are not paying enough attention to McCain’s stance on the Iraq war.  I know the economy sucks and that’s a pressing issue for all of us, but while we’re being steered to pay attention to the economy, people are still dying in Iraq, and familes are separated.  According to McCain, things could be that way for a very long time.  Long enough that my son could actually be affected by this stupid, illegal, and immoral war.  I agree with Alex’s mom.  i will travel to the ends of the Earth if I have to, but Mr. McCain, YOU CANNOT HAVE MY SON. EVER.

4,110 US soldiers have been killed in Iraq (again, this number does not reflect those who have died of injuries once they have air-lifted out of the country) 30,247 Us soldiers have been wounded in Iraq

17
Jun
08

Flood of Incompetence

Wouldn’t it be nice if, during this time of a national environmental crisis, in which towns are being leveled by tornadoes and swept away by floods, we had some sort of force – a National Guard, perhaps – to help these towns and cities clean up and rebuild?  Wouldn’t it have been wonderful is some past President had thought of a situation in which we might need such a “Reserve Army” if you will, and had made provisions for such a thing?  And if a President had done so, wouldn’t it be a little irresponsible (maybe even slightly criminal) for a current President to commit that force elsewhere, out of the country which they had taken an oath to serve, to fight a foreign enemy on foreign soil and leave them there for an extended length of time, even when they are needed despareately at home?  Might that not be a reason for impeachment, especially if it had happened more than once during a particular President’s term?




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I am not perfect. I do my best to practice what I preach, but I am human. My mantra is, "DO NO HARM". I may not always succeed, but I will always try. My goal is to be a better person today than I was yesterday.

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