Thursday, October 19, 2006
The only honest answer is "no"
Billmon: For someone in my shoes, though, hopelessness can become an excuse for not thinking about unpleasant truths. But there was something about Riverbend's quiet despair that forced me to think hard about my own moral responsibility as an American for a genocide caused by America -- because of a war started in my name, paid for with my taxes.
I've opposed this war since it was just a malignant smirk on George Bush's face. I've spoken against it, written against it, marched against it, supported and contributed to politicians I generally despise because I thought (wrongly) that they might do something to stop it. It's why I took up blogging, why I started this blog.
But the question Riverbend has forced me to ask myself is: Did I do enough? And the only honest answer is no.
Jonathan Schwarz at A Tiny Revolution: There are very, very few Americans who can honestly say we did what we should have done, what any basic morality required of us. God knows I'm not one of that few. In fact, when I compare myself to that few, and take a step back, I see I'm standing much closer to George Bush than I am to, say, Kathy Kelly.
At some point I'll have to talk to some of the few and ask them how they managed to pull it off. Meanwhile, as mistah charley likes to say: may the Creative Forces of the Universe, if any, have mercy on our souls, if any.
There is nothing more that I can add. I am in the same crowd as Billmon and Jonathan. As are you, most probably. And while Jonathan Schwarz appeals to a deity for mercy upon his soul, the Great Penguin is not famed for dispensing mercy. I doubt even daily sacrifices of herring will suffice to wake Him from His sated slumber. Tuxology can be an unforgiving religion at times...
-- Badtux the Somber Penguin
Posted by: BadTux / 10/19/2006 02:37:00 PM
I think that nearly anyone who opposes the current regime can answer no when we look at it honestly. But honestly, I've given up. Why you might ask? Ultimately, what will be will be. Nothing lasts forever and once this regime ends another will take it's place. If you want to change the world you need yourself. If enough people looked to themselves and their business, who knows what would happen, but for right now, I can only try to make my little corner of the world a little nicer while planning for the worst. I no longer feel safe speaking my mind, practising my religion publicly, or protesting the inhumanities that are being committed each and every day. So when I protest, it will be with my face and head covered, my religion will go underground, I will be purchasing weapons and learning to survive, and when it comes time, I'll be ready to leave and disappear before they can throw me into an gov't facility for "reeducation". Extreme, maybe. Selfish, absolutely. But as I said, in the end, you can only take care of yourself. As for why I read here.. mostly it's the cat pictures,ctg but it's also nice to read one more sane voice amid all the sound and fury.
BTW, I've posted two links of interest. One, a protest group, the other is a book by an author who worked underground in an activity that was at that time illegal under the regime of Generalissimo Francisco Franco.
# posted by Sionnach, the Celtic Kitsune : 19/10/06 8:19 PM
If today wasn't nearly difficult enough in my little ego-sphere, I come here and read this post.
No, we all clearly did not do enough to stop this mindless and futile war. I don't know if this war was preventable by any means available to us. Our laws were circumvented. The intelligence was tainted and sullied. The Congress was intimidated; the public forcefed pure bullshit. In retrospect, once this juggernaut began to move even the slightest bit forward it, at that point, had a life of its own, one not even its creators could prevent from fruition. In short, this thing was never under anyone's control. Any efforts at halting its advance would have been akin to stopping Hurricane Katrina with a water pistol.
# posted by TheCultureGhost : 19/10/06 11:14 PM
Guilt. It's eating away at me too. I think about Riverbend all the time and hope to god that she doesn't hate everyone of us, but I couldn't blame her if she did.
# posted by pissed off patricia : 20/10/06 8:54 AM
i too get so morose that small things become difficult. writing about it? it keeps coming out fuck fuck motherfuckers shitheel bastard poofter bitch fuckers.
rather than take to the streets i moved to the country. going over the long dirt road will bring you to thick adobe walls, several big dogs, then you encounter me (and my gun collection)
i have a sign on the gate which says
(leave us alone)
# posted by The Minstrel Boy : 20/10/06 9:33 AM
don't look back - look forward
could-a, should-a, would-a are useless words...
we did what we did - for what ever reason we did
now is when we need to concentrate -- let's take this present and make something of it!!
# posted by azgoddess : 20/10/06 11:33 AM
I wrote a post similar to this one a couple weeks ago. There have been a number of articles comparing us to the "good Germans" of the Hitler years. I disagree. We haven't been good Germans, we've been bad Americans.
But it seems to me that the trick is to get used to this feeling. We've got a sea of blood on our hands, no doubt. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't bother trying to stop the hemorrhaging. Writing what I did helped a little toward accepting my share of the blame -- maybe it'll help you, too. Hell only knows how many times I've wanted to throw up my hands and retreat to a cave.
America ain't dead yet, tho...
# posted by Mimus Pauly : 20/10/06 11:47 AM
Well, Mimus, that's one reason why I didn't post this one on your blog... figured you'd already been there, didn't want it back again.
# posted by BadTux : 20/10/06 1:31 PM
BadTux, you can post whatever you feel like posting on the Medley. I can deal with it...
# posted by Mimus Pauly : 20/10/06 2:22 PM
- Name: BadTux
- Location: Some iceberg, South Pacific, Antarctica
I am a black and white and yellow multicolored penguin making his way as best he can in a world of monochromic monkeys.
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Cost of the War in Iraq