In the past year, I have been becoming more and more involved, again, in the American political landscape. Now, we prepare to remember a day that has forever changed our very definition of America. If you are an American, older than ten years of age, you have a story. I have several, but after watching both the Republican debate and the President’s speech to the nation last night, a few ideas are in my mind that I wish to remove by writing about them here.
On September 11th, 2001, the United States of America was purposely attacked by foreigners who wanted us to know that we are hated. Their purpose was not to notify us. Their purpose was to hurt us, to shake our nation’s people. It was. They did. My question today, however, is a real one in my mind. More than 3,000 citizens died. 343 New York City firefighters, first responders, and police died that day. The Pentagon bled, and a fourth plane headed for our nation’s capital was purposely driven into the ground by heroes who found that idea worth dying for.
My “issue”, or “pillar” or “foundational purpose” in my renewed activity in the political circus is really simple: Democracy. So, was Democracy attacked on September 11th, 2001? Yes. “We are Americans!” rang out, from every corner of our land. Where did that go? What happened?
Corporations are persons. The purpose of the Tea Party is to undo our Constitution, and re-make an America that is a corporatist plutocratic theocracy, not a Representative Democracy. The absolute disrespect of the American people toward the sitting President, our legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government has become not only common, but acceptable in some circles. Is this why we remember September 11th, 2001? Pundits, political hacks, wonks, and radio personalities openly deride, state absolutely treasonous statements against our government, our governance, and our elected leaders with unfettered abandon. Corporations rob our Treasury, while our legislators purposely set about either removing those who would support, even with their votes, our President, from the voting process. The erosion of personal liberties and constitutionally guaranteed rights of our citizens continues without boundary, or expectation of outrage from an American citizenry who proclaim “Liberty”! Is this why we remember that clear, bright day?
When elected leaders decide their access to those to whom they are accountable decide to charge for the right to be heard by those who would possibly disagree with their views, or the views of those who tell them what to do, what to say, and/or what to believe, Democracy is in grave peril. When elected members of our legislative bodies open announce their intentions to remove themselves from the chamber when the President speaks, Democracy is in peril. Since when was attendance to a Joint Session of Congress optional? When every second of his office is singly dedicated to the ineffectiveness of the duly elected President of the United States, the Senate Minority Leader, a true Kentucky embarrassment by the name of Mitch McConnell must answer for his treasonous activities by the American people. Tea Party terrorists who believe that the will of the American people, when directly in opposition to the concept of Representative Democracy, is of no consequence, are openly, and without apology working as hard as they can to completely undo not only our government, but our very form of government. If this were to happen from outside the Chamber, our Military would be charged with protecting our nation from terrorists much more insidious than those few who took it upon themselves to create the havoc of September 11th, 2001 and beyond. Yet, they crow publicly about their intentions, their plans, and their unwillingness to even consider their actions as perilously dangerous to the America I know and love.
Candidates for the office of President cause me to know not where to begin. Their intent, freely and clearly stated to remove the social contract, eliminate the social safety net, and FINALLY undo the protections given to those most unable to defend themselves in our society sicken me. But what makes me more is is the fact that they not only believe they can get away with this, but that they openly dare anyone to call them to account for their treasonous statements against our President, our governance, our government, and our Democracy itself. It is not a matter of political disagreement; that is the life-blood of Democracy itself. These folks, however, go so far beyond the pale that simple disagreement is not even visible in a rear view mirror. Remove the protections Americans have hard-won and the agencies which “stand in the way of the job creators”, bring profit back to the corporate state, and do away with the middle class. Remove unions, protections granted citizens, voting rights, collective bargaining, and such a host of attacks on our Democracy as to dizzy the average American mind. That is not the plan. That is the reality. It is happening now. Democracy itself is under direct attack, from within our own borders. I am here to say that it must stop. Right now.
It is of no import that I disagree with these folks. It is, however of the greatest import to understand their intent, and to address it in the strongest possible terms. Governor Scott Walker (R-WI) is planning to present a speech to a Tennessee Reagan Day Dinner soon. There is a very visible intent to do all within my personal power to make that a very bad choice. Yet, what I read is that the Tennessee Tea Party is urging it’s members to not attend the dinner, but the protest accompanying it with loaded weapons! Urging them, mind you. To these blathering idiots, that is a call to arms. Are you kidding me? In America? Isn’t it just a tad soon to so openly act on their intents? Yet, have no doubt. There ARE their intents. And, I have no doubt that there will be plenty of “hog legs” facing the dissent that will be posted, including my own. I had absolutely no intent to attend these protests–until today. I had no intent of standing on a miner’s strike line in Southeeastern Kentucky, either…until threats were made, violence realized, and corporate coal operators brought in thugs to simply do away with those who would require them to protect their workers, provide disability and what would (originally from my family kitchen table) be written as the Worker’s Compensation Act. I stood. I will stand again. Who do these people think they are? By what right do they presume to commandeer Democracy, and undo 236 years of history simply because they want to?
Disrespecting the sitting President of the United States is a felony. Refusing to attend a Joint Session of Congress is the act which enables the House and/or Senate Sergeant-at-Arms to request the Assistance of Federal Marshals. So, when you so proudly flaunt your intent against the President, the Presidency, and your very own constituents, know that there are those of us who believe your irresponsible “representation” should have significant consequence.
We felt compelled to create consequence against those who had absolutely NOTHING to do with the attack on America on September 11th, 2001. Why then would we feel it unnecessary to require consequences for those within our own nation who are working every moment to undo it? We come together to remember the ultimate sacrifice of so many, yet do nothing when our own do such greater damage to our country, our Democracy. How hypocritical can we possibly be? Is this what September 11th, 2001 has come to mean? Really?
25 million of our fellow citizens cannot participate in America today because corporations have destroyed the social contract we made with them so long ago. They tell us that it is the responsibility of the corporation to improve the bottom line for their share-holders. That is a lie. Corporations and businesses, regardless of size or profit, have a responsibility of citizenship to their communities, their workers and their nation. If they fail in this responsibility, their “citizenship” should be immediately voided, revoked. They should have their assets seized, their accounts frozen, and their officials jailed. Wall Street ripped off America for trillions of dollars without so much as a slap on the wrist. Yet, one New York Attorney General trying to call one of the criminals to account is hounded by everyone, including Washington, D. C. to just go away. NO! Jail them all! They are crooks, criminals, and treasonous traitors against the people of the United States of America! They purposely set out to drain our Treasury for their own profit at the cost of hundreds of millions of Americans, mortgages, college funds, retirement accounts, and the American Dream itself! They are traitors to America, as are those who support them. The Federal Reserve has privately given more than $30 billion of our dollars to these criminals, without accountability We make trade deals with criminals, and criminal nations, flowing our jobs to the cheapest labor in the world, for the sake of profit that these traitors have no intention of sharing with the country who makes their business possible in the first place. Is this what September 11th, 2001 was about? Really?
The complete and total elimination of the American middle class is all but complete. I, for one, refuse to allow it to happen quietly. Michael Moore, and others like him have spent their time, talent and treasure holding, as possible, these anti-democracy thugs accountable. Yet, they are vilified. Really? Since when does dissent qualify for open attempts to harm, injure or (in many cases) kill those who dissent? Is this America? Really? Is this what September 11th, 2001 was about?
Perry, Bachmann, Romney, Paul, Cain, Gingrich (again!), and others of the Tea Party ilk would have us believe that it is corporate America’s responsibility to rule over us, yet not hire us. They would tell you that the EPA needs to be removed as quickly as the funds for Planned Parenthood, NPR, and the Nuclear Regulatory Agency, NASA, the Academy of Sciences, and the World Health Organization. They would REMOVE 18 of our Constitution’s Amendments as being unnecessary, troublesome, or just plain unnecessary. They would, as their puppet masters the Koch Brothers so recently (and very nearly successfully) showed to the students of Wake County, North Carolina, re-segregate those public schools they would then remove from our landscape, in favor of “Charter” (read this to mean ultra-conservative Christian Programming camps) Schools across the American landscape. In their philosophy, individual citizenship is equally inconvenient, as is any discussion of the health of our planet, our people, our military…and pretty much any other identifiable symbol of American Democracy. The current Republican front-runner is a man who has been “selected” and “ordained” as a “Prophet” and given the responsibility of commanding the control of, and elimination of one of the seven “mountains” identified by his religious mentor: government. His role is to not reform it, or even reduce it. According to their own words, Governor Perry’s mission is to become the President of the United States to END government. This is but one of their seven “mountains” which their faith (?) compels them to command in the America of tomorrow. Education is another one. Culture is another one. Religion (really?) is another one. Society is another one.
Removal of Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare is not some kind of philosophical debate amongst Tea Party members. It is a short term operational imperative. Removal of all taxation on business is another one. Increasing taxation of the bottom 90% of American workers is another one. The removal of any form of health care that is not privately purchased is another one. This is what September 11, 2001 was about? Really? Is this the purpose of September 11th, 2001? Is that what so upset and angered America? To tell me that the “enemy” is government, that the role of those running for the highest elected office in our land is to remove government permanently, and re-form our Constitution is, at least for me, a statement of war against my country. I believe them. I take their words at face value. Because, you see, I don’t believe that disaster aid must not be given until, and unless an equal reduction in “Entitlement” programs is realized. I do not accept that corporations have personhood. I do not accept open rebellion by terrorists within our own legislative bodies. I do not believe that single, non-elected citizens control the actions of my elected legislators. Nor do unaffiliated organizations whose purposes are to undo at the state level those same democratic values of our nation. ALEC is doing a very good job at what they do. A $200 million “kick-start” by the TWO brothers from … Canada? Minnesota? gave them a great beginning. The two sons of a man who once worked WITH Stalin to undermine the United States of America, who was a co-founder of the John Birch Society, two Libertarians (NOT!) who believe that the American model should never have existed in the first place? They are enemies of the State, and should be dealt with as such. Why? Because if September 11th, 2001 meant anything of substance, it meant that American Democracy is the correct form of government for the American people. That’s why? Otherwise, what IS the big deal, anyway?
I have held my tongue wrongly. So have you. If you do not know what Democracy is, or why we have it…you are a failed citizen of this nation, pure and simple. If you believe that it is in our best interest to remove the middle class from America, you are a failed citizen of America. If you believe that it is the role of the corporation to rule America, you are a failed citizen. If you believe that it is reasonable to remove those agencies, amendments, and organizations tasked with protecting the American people from the excesses of corporate greed, you are very definitely a failed citizen of the United States of America. If you believe that a specific State has more standing than the fifty United States of America, you are a failed citizen of the United States of America. If you believe that the Constitution of the United States of America is a meaningless piece of paper who has very well long outlasted its usefulness, you are a failed citizen of the United States of America. If you remember September 11th, 2001 as the day America was attacked, you are a failed citizen of the United States of America. If you believe that open and radical disrespect of the sitting President of the United States is an acceptable practice, either as a citizen or an elected official, you are a failed citizen of the United States of America. You do not understand the significance of September 11th, 2001, and your claims otherwise are nothing but arrogant posturing, indicative of your failed citizenship. You are a fraud, a mountebank, a coward. You are a traitor of this Democracy, and should be dealt with as a traitor to our nation. You are more a terrorist than those who plowed four planes into our nation’s soul, and should be dealt with as such. Your words, your actions, and your intentions declare your true nature, and your most closely held beliefs. You are a shame to your nation. It is not your disagreement which condemns you. It is your intentions. It is your disrespect of our nation, our government, our governance, and Democracy itself which condemn you. You are a traitor to your nation. September 11th, 2001 is YOUR holiday.
I will no longer keep my silence. That is what the terrorists would want. I urge you not to keep your silence one moment longer. Stand up, and fight back against those who would undo our Democracy. Do not let any word against our governance go unchallenged. Democracy itself is not only under attack. It is on the ropes. We stand to lose it in November, 2012. I refuse to accept that this is the “next” day of remembrance for America. I will not remain silent and allow those who disrespect my President, my country, or MY Democracy to have their will unabated, unchallenged, or uncalled for what it is. I simply will not. That is my choice.
That’s what I think.