View From Here
With his newest plan to not lose the war, we can viscerally feel the “slippery slope,” the President George W. (Worst ever) Bush has placed this nation on. As the United States careens downward and the winds of growing fascism whistle louder past our ears, it is readily apparent that the U.S can’t stay in Iraq but we’re to get out. This can only mean that we must leave but that would require a courage that is lacking in the leadership of this nation. The administration we now have running the country have the swaggering courage to order others to their death and order them to kill. They have the courage and the will to order others to torture, the courage to lay waste to the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights as we know them, the courage to do away with all the freedoms that we were taught were the bedrock of this nation. What they lack is the courage to acknowledge they were wrong. Lack the courage to stop the disaster they’ve caused.
More and more Americans and commentators are coming to agree with the millions who marched against the war in Iraq at its inception, agree with the French government that was ridiculed for its opposition, and agree that the United States has begun flirting with the fascism that we righteously question of other countries at other times. Future generations will not only ask “How could the Germans have followed Hitler?” They will also ask, “After all they’ve seen, how could the Americans have allowed their president to send 20,000 more to Baghdad? How could they have allowed him to hold people captive, without charges, trials or chance of release?”
This can only mean that what is needed is a facing of reality and extraction of US forces. There can be no more threat of descending into chaos, we’re already there. No more threat of decreasing American standing in the world, we couldn’t get much lower than we are now. The only real price left to pay is the loss of control of oil from the region. And since that was the core reason for this debacle, it is the only reason now left to stay, but it’s not enough reason to continue the killing and the suffering, not enough reason to continue this bloody stain on the American fabric.
Only a popular movement will give politicians the spine to stand up to the tyranny now running this country. But this is a broken record we’ve been playing since the beginning of the war and frankly at this point, we still don’t see the mass movement of the millions needed that has signaled change in other nations. Therefore this horror will continue.
In a previous column on parenting in the African-American community, not enough homage was paid to the majority of parents who do all they can to properly raise their children and who, every day, endure challenges, hurdle barriers every which way they can just to survive. Notice must be taken of the mothers we’ve seen, walking children to daycare at 7:30am every morning They are dressed for work and the children have their clothes clean, hair done and skin oiled. There are heroes and heroines all around us and we have to acknowledge, honor and support them every which way we can.
Speaking of survival in a cold and hostile world, while waiting on line for a chicken roti in East New York, we recently made a first-ever purchase (for journalistic purposes) of a bootleg DVD from a young Black man with an expert line of patter. Having a background in service sales at the six-figure-plus level, we were appreciative of his skill, energy and product presentation. It was readily apparent that if circumstances were different, he could easily be working for a major corporation that would be profiting mightily from having him on their team.
It was poetic irony that the DVD purchased was Will Smith’s The Pursuit of Happyness which chronicles the career of stock broker Chris Gardner, a “marginally employed salesman” who snares a Dean Witter Reynolds internship and becomes a top sales earner, later forming his own company. Smith’s portrayal of a man contending with the daily pain, of survival is dead-on.