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You are here Editorials Jesse Richard's Commentary When History Repeats

When History Repeats

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25-April-2003

As the inaccurately named “coalition” forces set up the new American/British capital of their new colony in Iraq, I cannot help but  reflect on the original victim of Anglo-American aggression; the Native American.

I call myself an American and I consider myself a patriot. I am grateful to have been born in America. I am grateful for the freedoms my government protects for me. My criticism of US policy is an example of my desire to correct what is wrong, prevent injustice and encourage the exploration of constructive solutions to our problems; to make this a greater nation. Yet from deep down inside of me, as if a needle were stabbing my conscience, the hypocrisy of my patriotism resounds with the question: whose freedom am I really enjoying?

Our court-appointed President speaks daily of democracy and freedom. At the  same time, he and his administration work feverishly to weaken the very democracy they tout and to eliminate the very freedoms they claim separates us from the “evil” empires of the world. While the world that has been so drastically disunited by this administration ponders the legitimacy of our invasion and occupation of Iraq, we all seem to forget that the Unites States of America is at its core an occupying force. Let us not forget whose land we occupy. Let us not forget that this land was a great nation before the “Americans” decided that they wanted it for themselves.

Are we witnessing a modern day version of the birth of America?  I know the Bush supporters liken the conquest of the Native American and the colonization of the Arab world to a real life Conquest of the Planet of the Apes. Bush supporters have no use for “different people”. So many right wing Bush supporters have no real place in their world for people who are of a different color, race, sexual preference or religion. Live or die, to them it is all just a quick story on Fox News, no more serious than the latest episode of Survivor; cheered on and delivered by the right wing pundits who amateurishly impersonate journalists.

A sad thing about many Bush supporters is that, like the many they endorse, they have no understanding of history; not of world history, and not of their own history. Current events are supplied in carefully manipulated bite sized morsels; individually wrapped in an American flag and brought to you by CNN, Rupert Murdoch and corporate sponsors.

The world is rushing forward to bring democracy to the Afghan people, to the Iraqi people and to the Arab world, yet we have not yet granted freedom to the very victims of the Bush administration’s assault on democracy whom we, as Americans, ignore each day.

Perhaps democracy first can be truly brought to America. Perhaps freedom can be restored here, too. Perhaps eliminating hypocrisy will cure the world’s ills in a kinder and gentler manner than can be accomplished by war. Perhaps the policy of regime change is indeed the correct way to inject democracy and freedom into a nation that is lacking in both. Perhaps that nation is America and regime change is most needed here.
 
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