Saturday, July 05, 2008

Forget the Fourth

What Chris Satullo says (via). It's a day late and we already had the fireworks, but this is about exactly what I was thinking the whole time.

Put the fireworks in storage.

Cancel the parade.

Tuck the soaring speeches in a drawer for another time.

This year, America doesn't deserve to celebrate its birthday. This Fourth of July should be a day of quiet and atonement.

For we have sinned.

We have failed to pay attention. We've settled for lame excuses. We've spit on the memory of those who did that brave, brave thing in Philadelphia 232 years ago.

The America those men founded should never torture a prisoner.

The America they founded should never imprison people for years without charge or hearing.

The America they founded should never ship prisoners to foreign lands, knowing their new jailers might torture them.

Such abuses once were committed by the arrogant crowns of Europe, spawning rebellion.

Today, our nation does such things in the name of our safety. Petrified, unwilling to take the risks that love of liberty demands, we close our eyes.

Yet they pledged their lives and sacred honor - no idle vow - to defend the "inalienable rights" of men. Inalienable - what does that signify? It means rights that belong to each person, simply by virtue of being human. Rights that can never be taken away, no matter what evil a person might do or might intend.

Surely one of those is the right not to be tortured. Surely that is a piece of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."


But what will history think of us, of how we responded to our great challenge? Sept. 11 was a hideous evil, a grievous wound. Yet, truth told, it has not summoned our better angels as often as our worst.

We have betrayed the July 4 creed. We trample the vows we make, hand to heart.

Don't imagine that only the torturer's hand bears the guilt. The guilt reaches deep inside our Capitol, and beyond that - to us.

Our silence is complicit. In our name, innocents were jailed, humans tortured, our Constitution mangled. And we said so little.


Let us atone, in quiet and humility. Let us spend the day truly studying the example of our Founders. May we earn a new birth of courage before our nation's birthday next rolls around.

1 comment:

mnuez said...


I hate this hagiographying of the "Founding Fathers" and the constant worshipful cocksucking that so many people enjoy engaging in on the debilitated phalli of these corpses. I suppose it could be worse, they could be sincere.

A sincere cocksucker would really care about what The Founding Fathers thought, felt and intellectually farted. Thankfully all we have to deal with are sleazy marketing types who know that their personal political preferences go over better with copious sprinkles of "1776"s, "Washington"s and "Constitution"s.

Whatever may or may not be wrong (and fixable) about our world/species/country/government has very little reference to a handful of dudes who lived on a different planet than the one that we currently inhabit.

As for torture and the suspension of habeas corpus for Jose Padilla:

Cry me a river.

EVERY SINGLE MOTHERFUCKIN DAY in this country someone is being locked up in a tiny, dangerous, life-destroying cage for an extended period of time for a crime that they did not commit.

EVERY SINGLE MOTHERFUCKIN DAY in this country over 50 people DIE because they lacked health insurance.

And that's just the start of it.

Factor in the hundred million who slave all day for their taskmasters in exchange for just enough money to be able to stay alive and you start to understand that this massive country of ours is a crematoria.

And these motherfuckin bleeding heart liberals get to jerk off over a few publicized cases of torture and whatnot?!

FUCK THEM! By righteously (not to mention effetely) waving these huge stinking red herrings in the air, these guys are part of the problem.