Friday, August 12, 2005

Oh Yeah I'm Pissed

I find this* so incredibly disgusting I have no words. This is what is being done in your name, people. This is what being American means now:

Foreign citizens who change planes at airports in the United States can legally be seized, detained without charges, deprived of access to a lawyer or the courts, and even denied basic necessities like food, lawyers for the government said in Brooklyn federal court yesterday.

The men in my family that were eligible have all served in the military, and despite my liberal political bent I seriously considered serving too, but was denied because of health problems. Instead, I have served my country by serving people in need, volunteering and working with poor families and for a local Emergency Medical Service. We always put up the flag on Memorial Day and other holidays, my grandfather teaching me how to treat it respectfully. My grandmother insisted that voting was one of the greatest privileges and responsiblities I would ever have, and reminded me to vote in every election, no matter how small, and I have only missed two elections since I turned 18. I take my role as a citizen of this country very seriously, not least because I know how many people sacrificed themselves so that I can have the life that I have now. So when I read about what this government is trying to do, for the sake of the American people, it makes me more than a little angry.

It is no longer good enough to say, "Well, I didn't vote for him". It is no longer good enough to write in a blog about how badly these people are screwing up, to watch The Daily Show and laugh at how dumb the president is. It is time to DO something about it. It's time to get active, to give money if you have it, time if you don't. I'm just as guilty as anyone, and I will attempt to change that in the next few days. Wouldn't you want other people doing this for you?

You know that old chant they use against people like me--If you don't like America, then why don't you just leave? I am not leaving because this is MY country, and I have every right to be pissed off. I don't want to live in a country that thinks that it is okay to treat people in this way, and if you don't like it, then maybe you should leave. Plenty of dictatorships around that should suit you. Please. Get the hell out.

And if you think it couldn't happen to you, because you are an American citizen, you're wrong. Is this what you stand for? Is this what you're proud of? Because I am not, and I'll be damned if I let anyone make me ashamed to be an American.

*via Making Light

1 comment:

Anna said...

I'm already ashamed. Have been for a long long time. I still wonder if we should have moved to Canada while we could have, but it seemed like too much to approach at the time.

Anyway, let me know if you're doing anything around here; I'll join you. It was one of my goals in moving here anyway: returning to active activism (aside from my consumer activism.) It was my consolation prize for staying in the States. Let's get Peanut and TLM going early!