Sunday, November 07, 2004

Moral Tyranny

A guy I work with came into my office Friday morning. With glee in his voice he states, "We've surrounded Fallujah." 

With a look of scorn and astonishment on my face, I raised my head and replied, "I find it hard to find joy in the fact that people are about to die."

"People have to die so others can live," he mumbles as he turns quickly to leave. 

Befuddled, I think: "WTF????" 

He voted for Bush. All that is pure, good, and right with humanity is dieing so he can live.

I wrote the above Friday, right after the incident occurred. Please don't think that I wish Bush dead. That is not what I mean by the statement "so he can live." It's meant to be symbolic of what he represents, what his hidden agenda represents. What this election represents to me.

I am fearful of where Bush is leading this country. However, it goes beyond his foreign, domestic, and economic policies. I'm not even sure I can adequately express what it is that I fear. But, I'll try today and in the days that follow. But, I also want to try to write about other things. I need to get passed this.

I have been inconsolably depressed since the election.  I've been trying to make sense why it has hit me so hard - why I feel so hopeless about the state of our nation.

If you look at the course of history, the conscience of humanity has been growing in what I believe to be a positive direction, in the direction of love. However, what slapped me in the face about this election is that we are currently in a regression. Or, maybe I've just deceived myself into thinking that we were progressing further than we actually have. I look at the map and see red, even in the state of California. There are only a few counties, the most populated, that voted for Kerry. I feel disconnected from people that I am surrounded by.  It makes me feel hopeless. That's what the red means to me.

I know people who are Republican. I know people who voted for Bush, very few people. It's not the individual decisions that perplex me. I understand their reasoning and respect their decision. It's the collective conscience of the nation that hurts. Bush ran a campaign based on fear and deception. He's operated his presidency and garnered support by manipulating the emotions of our citizenry.

The fact that eleven states voted for an amendment to their state constitution to deny homosexuals the right to marry is emblematic of the lack of love and acceptance that we have for one another. I personally believe that Bush came forward right before the election stating that he wasn't against civil unions in order to get people out to vote. Because he knew that those who are opposed in those states where it was up for a vote would show up in droves to insure that it was passed, and those same people would vote for him.

I believe in freedom. I respect people's personal beliefs and I believe that in a truly free society differing views can coexist without impeding one another. After this election, I came to the realization that I am clearly in the minority.

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

-- C. S. Lewis

18 comments:

greenheart21469 said...

Robbie, I hope you are wrong--I hope that Bush won because a majority of Americans just didn't think Kerry was a good enough candidate.  I was upset at first.  I even asked dh if we could move to Canada.  I guess we just have to remember that the principles that the US was founded on and the reasons the founding fathers fought so hard for independence will, in the end, stand stronger and last longer than Bush's mistakes and ulterior motives.  

For the record, I voted for Herry, but only because he seemed to be the better of two bad candidates.  I hope we get someone to be passionate about in 2008.

sistercdr said...

Robbie, I wish that I had words of hope or comfort, but I am with you in your fears.  May God/dess bless us all.

barebytes said...

You handle your frustration much better than I. I'm still trying to deal with the insanity of the election. It's the Meek shall inharit the earth, not the Sheep. I feel your pain. Hugs Lanny

hope5555 said...

You are not alone in the way you are feeling.  I have felt the same way myself, as have MANY others I have talked to. I don't think we need to "get past this"....we need to get more involved, now, at the local level.  Find a cause, contribute to something, volunteer.  We may not be able to elect a President we like but we can do things to make a difference at the local level, something we have a little more control over.  Sigh.

mlraminiak said...

LOVE that quote.  It is absolutely true of our nation today, which makes it all the more frightening.

Karl Rove is an absolutely BRILLIANT political strategist.  He has an innate knowledge of the hot button issues of our society today, and how to take advantage of them to their fullest extent.  I'm sure the maneuvering of the "gay marriage" issue was his brainchild, as was 99% of what worked for the Bush campaign.  It's all ugly, it's all lies, or at the very least, perversion of the truth.  But it appeals to the basest of instincts of the commonest of citizens:  xenophobia, bigotry, the-guy-with-the-biggest-club-and-the-balls-to-use-it-"wins..."  And THAT, apparently, is what wins elections.  Lisa  :-[

lisbnjvi said...

My family and I are in fear right along with you Robbie.  My husband is actually looking into moving to Canada, and I am totally serious here!  There is a 4 year wait though, so I told him to chill out for a little bit.  We have children though that will be affected by the draft that I feel Bush will inevitably reinact, and this is our biggest fear right now.  We also have the fear of having this "God fearing" man cramming his religion down our throats and putting it where it shouldn't be.  If Bush has it his way, I will be burned at the stake and people who follow him will stand and cheer right along with him as I burn.  I say Shame on America!
Hugs and love,
Lisa

readmereadyou said...

I realized yesterday that I'd better stop grieving and make the best of life. I had the worst migraine from all this than I've had in 10 years....flashing vision, numb fingers and all. I don't want to get sick over this man. You shouldn't either. We have to have faith. As a guy on CNN put it.....OK, he won....Now, let him clean up his own mess.

grodygeek said...

Robbie,
I know where you come from. Your scorn and astonishment has shown up on my face last week more than once.

I no longer understand my own countrymen. Why they chose to vote the way they did baffles me. Marriage is mentioned in the bible. But so is forgiveness. More than once. I don't sense any forgiveness in these leaders. None.

Compassion? I don't feel it, nor see it. I see a willingness to persecute, to challange, to divide, attack, to discriminate, to do anything except have compassion.

Gordy
the cycling comic

st0rmwhispers said...

I didn't last long at depression...I am angry.

What is wrong with people?  I'm becoming disgusted with America....I can't believe how I feel.

guardianfas said...

How do you feel about two times?!?

The feelings represented, of failure and despair only serve to continue the downward spiral of hopelessness.

Where is the positive energy - where is the hope - where is the grasp for something better?  Are you ready to give up because "your guy" didn't win?

It's not the man on Pennsylvania Avenue that makes this country great. Imagine this for a moment...there's a knock atr the door...it's the police...you're arrested for propogating negativity on the web - this is the way a good portion of the planet lives.  Think about it.

I've met John Kerry, a mere three years ago, and I'm sure he's long forgotten the exchange by now.  I wasn't impressed at this man who was angling for the best shot for the evening news - and we were at a funeral at the time.  This is not to say the opposition party wouldn't do the same - of course they would.  This is not about parties - this is about phonies on both sides.

At this same funeral, W flew in, along with other presidents from the recent past, and only W flew in and flew back out again, to pay respects to a man who served his country in both WW II and in Congress for many terms, withouot public commentary or political posturing, touching given that half of Congress was present as well.

Did I mention that the deceased Congressman was from the "other" party?

This was a genuine sharing of respect and condolences to a grieving family - nothing more - and this I remember, to this day.  It wasn't about making the evening news - it was about honoring a fallen colleague, who just happened to be from the other side of the aisle.

We could all learn from this example and stop complaining about things that really don't matter anyway, in the overall scheme of things, and put our collective efforts into something more positive and less devisive.

babyshark28 said...

gosh...I don't know what to say.

Washington voted for kerry, I voted for kerry...not everyone did.
I am not fearfull. I still believe in people.  the people's right.  the right to vote.
this country has been around for a very long time....can it really end or disolve in four years??

I love C.S. Lewis.

debijanssen said...

ROBBIE, I HONESTLY CAN'T SAY WHICH MAN WOULD DO A BETTER JOB...BUT WE HAVE TO PUT OUR TRUST IN GOD NOT MAN.  JUST REMEMBER TO PRAY EVERY DAY THAT GOD GUIDES OUR GOVERNMENT THATS ALL WE CAN DO.

bridgetteleigh75 said...

While I haven't been discussing political views at all in J-land, I will say I voted for Bush (please don't slap me!!).  For me, it was a matter of picking the less of two evils.  I wasn't thrilled with either choice.  But I will tell you what swayed me to Bush's side...I'm pregnant and I can't imagine ever giving up my baby to an abortion.  When I found out Kerry supported partial-birth abortions, I was horrified.  I guess it was the mother in me that voted for Bush.  

However, I do feel the pain of our country right now...and it concerns me too.  Everything that happens right now, at this moment in time, will affect Parker and Autumn one day...and that's just scary.  

Love,
Bridgett

ksgal3133 said...

My step-nephew is in Fallujah right now....I just wish this whole mess was over.

Gretchen

ecori said...

I totally understand where you are coming from.  Depression, grief and now anger is what I have been experiencing.  This weekend I as at a gathering, and an admitted republican voting person, when commenting on the people of Iraq, just flat out said, "I don't care about those people."
That clearly shows our differences.
Virginia

screaminremo303 said...

It's sad to see a large group of people so self-indulgent in their own special interests that they would place their own preferences above the interests of the nation at large.

judithheartsong said...

Thank you for being who you are. judi

ckays1967 said...

I am actually reading "Miracles" by CW Lewis right now.  I love the wit that he displays.  

I pray that you can regain the hope and faith you usually have linger in your heart.