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Uriah J. Fields

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Popular Poetry (Political Science)
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Atonement: New Orleans and Iraq
by Uriah J. Fields
Friday, September 23, 2005
Rated "G" by the Author.
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Atonement or else are the options available to Americans. Choosing the "or else" option means that Americans will have to pay a price that is much too great to pay for the sake of maintaining an ethos that offends many people, friends and foes, at home and abroad.

There are so many things for which Americans, especially America's leaders, need to atone for. This includes the barbaric treatment of the so-called American Indians by the Founding Fathers, their progenitors and descendants, and the 244-year enslavement of Africans in America.
But in this discourse the Twenty-First Century is being bracketed and the focus is on two tragedies that are just as current as today's news.
America's Government leaders are being called upon to atone for the part, if not the whole, they played in causing these tragedies. During the first four days of the Katrina/flooding catastrophe in New Orleans the Government failed to respond with help for these desperate people.
Question: Did the Government take a laissez-faire disposition toward New Orleans because the flood victims were African-Americans and poor? The result, more than eight hundred deaths, misery and the displacement of more than four hundred thousand people. This is a national disgrace that has been condemned by the people of many nations. Their leaders have offered help for these victims and some of it has been refused by the American Government. Why?
The second tragedy of the Twenty-First Century began in March 2003 when the United States invaded Iraq. The Iraq War has cost the United States the lives of more than nineteen hundred American soldiers, more than twenty thousand soldiers have been wounded, more than one-and-a-quarter hundred thousand Iraqis have died and more than three times that number have been wounded. America is boggged down in a quagmire in Iraq and almost daily American soldiers and Iraqis are being killed. America has spent nearly a hundred billion dollars fighting the war and the cost of the war for Iraqis is astronomical.
These two Twenty-First Century tragedies call for atonement to be made by the American Government. Let us remember that these tragedies were not caused by the acts of God, but by the acts of men. In expiation the means by which atonement is made are as follows:
First, the American Government leaders must admit that they lied about their failure to respond to the people in New Orleans and about Iraq having weapons of mass destruction to justify America preemptively launching the Iraq War.
Second, the American Government leaders must ask the people of New Orleans and the people of Iraq for forgiveness. This is to be followed by asking God for forgiveness and then forgiving themselves.
Thrid, restitution must be made to the people of New Orleans and Iraq. It should consist of making amends for the damage that has been done in New Orleans and Iraq that includes awarding these people reparations, in the greatest amount possible. A guideline for making such awards may be found in the liberal economic spirit exercised in funding the Iraq War that some Government leaders have hailed as sound and responsible fiscal spending, and added: "no price is too great for us to pay to win the Iraq War." It is apparent that after two-and-one-half years of fighting in Iraq that America is not going to win that "uwinnable" war.
Fourth, the American Government leaders must make a public vow to never again commit similar atocious and dastardly acts against people as those committed against the people of New Orleans and Iraq.
Atonement alone can achieve reconciliation and transformation, both necessary to assure that future generations of Americans will live in harmony with people throughout the world and in peace. Transformation is the only assurance that the Government will not continue to pursue the existing hegemonc policy that accounted for the tragedies in New Orleans and Iraq.
During the first decade of the Twenty- First Century America has the opportunity to atone for her role in causing the tragedies highlighted in this discourse. Does America have the will to take advantage of this opportunity remains an open question? Only time can tell. Another urgent and important question is: "How soon is too late?"

(To my readers. Feel free to offer your comments, pro or con, are of equal signifinance for me.)

Copyright 2005 by Uriah J. Fields
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Reviewed by C. McGovern-Bowen 9/25/2005
Wow. You have covered much ground in this critique, uriah. I pray that the american people will finally wake up to the loathsome fact that this good country has been highjacked by a bunch of terrorists in the form of the corporate-controlled bush administration. how very tragically sad it is to witness the unraveling of the clinton administration's work toward financial solvancy and the road to an economy built on innovaton and peace-- not redundancy and war as is currently the case...
as always, my friend, a stirring write.
Reviewed by Ch'erie de Perrot 9/24/2005
Well at least it is evident by your write, that you do not blame God for these atrocious events. So many do and that is something that the Evil hearted men will capitalize on big time.
A good write Uriah, and I fear you are on the money when you say, they will not atone, but add to the misery.

Reviewed by Huda Orfali 9/23/2005
I'm afraid that the American adminstration is heading toward another tragedy. This time it is going to be either Syria or Iran. It's heading toward another quagmire in the Middle East instead of repairing its mistakes, it's adding on. Let us hope that the voices of peace will be heard before another tragedy strikes.

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