An opinion piece on world events and the place of America among it all.
As a writer, I often receive press releases from groups promoting various causes. These press releases come from various political parties (both right and left of center), religious organizations, and from diverse science, environmental and technology groups.
One that I received this last week was from the Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good. Their sheet says that their purpose “engages Catholics, the media, and Americans of all faiths in dialogue about the Catholic social tradition and its core values of justice, human dignity, and the common good.” I wish all religions and religious sects had the same values and desires. However, what struck me with this release was a statement that read “the human person is the clearest reflection of God’s presence in the world, and that whatever causes harm and affronts human life threatens the very fabric of our society.” In addition, the release was issued in support of a newly introduced bill in the House of Representatives titled, “the Reducing Abortion and Supporting Parents Act” that intends to investigate the root causes of abortion—such as poor health care, poverty, job and family insecurity. The release praises the House effort as “an important step in building a true culture of life.” I, too, support this effort although it seems obvious that the root causes are already known since they have been inserted in the bill. One other may be included, however. The Church, both the Catholic and various Christian protestant sects, prohibit family planning which could eliminate much of this problem here as well as poverty, malnutrition and disease in much of the rest of the world.
However, this article really isn’t about abortion, the Catholic church or this piece of legislation. It is about the use of the phrase, “A true culture of life.” I would challenge any reader to justify any notion that America as a nation actually embraces a “culture of life.” We have the largest prison population in the world. We have more privately owned weapons than any nation; we have more homicides, violent crimes and child abuse than any other culture. We go to war on obviously false pretenses over and over again. The President says we are the leader of democracy in the world, but continues to create a nation and a world of theocratic fascism that insists that “alternative interrogation techniques”—previously known as torture—secret testimony, imprisonment without charge, domestic spying and censorship are truly sacred principals handed down by God to ensure that freedom and democracy prevail in a godless world.
Perhaps the old phrase “we have seen the enemy and he is us” is more appropriate today than it ever has been. The United States is the leading cause of the massive destruction of the environment that is occurring today. And what does our government do about it? Among other things it takes mercury off the toxics list, it reduces environmental controls of air pollution, it embraces the potentially disastrous plans of Monsanto to produce plant seeds that are sterile after one crop and cause sterility in any other crop within miles due to wind born pollen.
We have a “Christian” society that welcomes these disasters as proof positive that the Second Coming is right around the corner. Christians who continue to claim persecution even though such persecution is only in their own minds. But, after all, such persecution must exist! That is one of the signs of the Anti-Christ and we can’t have the long-awaited rapture without it!
Our culture, our nation is sick. It may be on its deathbed. Every great world power has come to this point in its history but this time it is more dangerous than any other. We have an ignorant, delusional man who has said that he is president because God chose him. We have a man who has committed criminal acts of war, threatens the peace of the world and continues to falsify “intelligence” in order to create a world of violence and hatred. We have a man who would rather see the world die of the effects of global warming to protect “business” and the economy than who would take action to protect the world and its diverse life and beauty.
Even before the US invaded Iraq, I wrote an article (“Dangerous Men in a Dangerous Time”) that pointed out the obvious lies of the president, the obvious miss-information being touted as truth and foretold the effects of actions taken based on lies. If I could do this and was proven right, I would ask why the country’s leaders could not come to the same conclusions? I frankly am ashamed of America and its inability to stand up for what is ethically and humanly right. Do we embrace a “true culture of life”? Have we ever? Our murder of Native Americans and the destruction of their cultures, the destruction of whole animal species, the failure of the government’s obligations to care for its citizens, to educate them, to feed and keep them healthy, to be tolerant and respectful of others are signs of our failure as a nation and as a people.
We have a sad history of ignoring the suffering, the outright genocide of other people because they are black and because they have nothing to offer us in exchange for their lives. Our government seldom sheds a crocodiles tear over acts of genocide that result in the horrible murders of hundreds of thousands, of millions of Africans or others in poverty stricken areas of the world.
I recall years ago when the people of Bangladesh were in the throes of crop failures and massive starvation one of the aid packages sent to them contained diet soda! Hey, the company was able to claim a tax credit after all. That is the driving force of American business.
This must end. America needs to once again stand tall and regain its image as a nation of generosity and high standards. It needs to once again help others because it is the right thing to do, not because it is profitable.
I am proud to say that I did not vote for the current president. He has, in fact, never been my leader. I am embarrassed countless times every day because of him. People wonder why the world doesn’t like us? Would you like or respect a country that controls the world’s wealth, runs its economy on the work produced by sweat shops, daily tries to force other nations to conform to “American” wishes under threat of destruction? Can you respect a “leader” that has such disrespect for other nations that he calls out to the Prime Minister of Britain, “Yo! Blair!”
Bush needs to be impeached. This creature needs to spend the rest of his life in disgrace—not continuing to become wealthy from corporate pay offs and oil company revenues or war profits. Americans need to actually think before they vote instead of allowing themselves to be duped by liars and those with out any concept of what is truly ethical. We as Americans and as residents of a larger community of nations must assume a role once again that is based on honor and stewardship.
As the press release said, “whatever causes harm and affronts human life threatens the very fabric of our society”. Mr. Bush and his administration is that threat.