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And so, like The Fool in King Lear, my emotions and words run the gamut from high outrage to low comedy. I am dancing as fast as I can. I am trying every trick in My Fool's Book to get Americans to grab back the crown. Some Americans sold it, some gave it away, and some had it stolen from them, but the end result is the same:
A pretender on the throne, the rightful rulers deposed, and the nation of my American Dream in mortal peril.
It cannot stand. This is The Thing That Should Not Be."
ABOUT "WHY DO YOU CARE SO MUCH?"
"IN WHAT WAY HAS ANY OF THIS AFFECTED YOU?"
A HUGE crime was committed -- a crime with MILLIONS of victims -- and a crime which will continue to harm its victims in the future. I care about it, because what happened was WRONG. It was an INJUSTICE. It was not FAIR.
There are many crimes, many injustices, about which I care deeply, but of which I am not a victim. My personal morality is not based on my own selfish self-interest, as much as it is based on my humanist philosophy. As a bleeding heart liberal, I believe that, as Jesus is written to have said, "whatever you do to the least of these, you do to me."
I wrote about this belief, the belief that tolerating injustices done to anyone, diminishes everyone, in the Rime I mentioned earlier:
'To save one life, is to save the world entire':
A Jewish axiom now of great fame.
'To save one vote, is to save The Vote entire':
Is a principle whose meaning's the same.
Al Gore wrote about the same subject in "Earth in the Balance"
"I believe also that -- for all of us -- there is an often poorly understood link between ethical choices that seem quite small in scale and those whose apparent consequences are very large, and that a conscious effort to adhere to just principles in all our choices -- however small -- is a choice in favor of justice in the world. By the same token, a willingness to succumb to distraction, and in the process fail to notice the consequences of a small choice made carelessly or unethically, makes one more likely to do the same when confronted with a large choice. Both in our personal lives and in our political decisions, we have an ethical duty to pay attention, resist distraction, be honest with one another and accept responsibility for what we do -- whether as individuals or together." - Al Gore, Earth in the Balance, pp 367-368
I believe that restricting outrage and activism to those causes in which we have a personal self-interest is WRONG -- is GREEDY. Though I am not gay, I fight for gay rights. Though I am not Jewish, I fight anti-Semitism. Though I am not black, I fight for racial justice. Though I am not a child, I fight for their human rights. Though I am not poor, I fight for the social safety net and progressive taxation. Though I am not elderly (and may never become so), I fight for the rights of the aged. Though I am not disabled, I fight for them, too.
I have other, more personal reasons for my strong reaction to the coup.
I take personally the fact that Bush was able to use his family's power and connections to thwart the will of the American people, and to thwart justice. You see, I was a bullied child, and one of my most dedicated tormentors was the son of a police official in my town. Because his father was powerful, no one would help me. Sound familiar?
I also take personally the media's attacks on Gore for his knowledge and intelligence. After one of the Presidential debates, an anchor on CNN (and I am paraphrasing here) said, "Al Gore comes across like the smartest kid in class, the one who knew all the answers, and nobody liked that kid." Well, I was a "smart kid." I take this kind of hateful media BS personally, not to mention the fact that I think this is a horrible message to send to young people, who are having a hard enough time being themselves, as it is.
ABOUT "GET OVER IT":
That is just plain unAmerican.
"Get over it" = "The deed is done. Why seek justice?"
Why seek justice? Because it is the American way.
If "Get over it" were the American way, there would be no justice system -- no recourse for victims of any kind. If "Get over it" were the American way, there would be no memorials to honor fallen heroes who fought to preserve our nation, nor to honor those who birthed this country and bequeathed it to their posterity. If "Get over it" were the American way, "freedom and justice for all" would not be part of our Pledge of Allegiance.
Those who tell us to "Get over it" are unAmerican. They are looking into the face of justice and compassion, and belittling those traits. They are not only part of the problem, they are propagandists protecting the problem from being solved.
They are wrong. They are bad. They are unAmerican.
They say, "Get over it." We say, "NEVER AGAIN."