Thursday, September 11, 2008

9/11

By Ted Burke

Here it is, the day that changed everything, the anniversary of the worst thing that could happen, the day when every bad thing we feared came to fruition, and now, eight years after the horrible attack of September 11, 2001, we as a country are up to our necks as the consequences of Bad Faith undermine our spirit, our credibility, our greatness as a Nation. Ensconced in two wars, unemployment exceeding 6 percent nationally, home foreclosures going through the roof, health care out of reach of increasing numbers of Americans , and bin Ladin still not captured, still breathing in some cave plotting more attacks on the Nation.

Things have not gone especially well for us as a people who habitually prefer to think of themselves as a country that can do the right thing and lead by the best example it can set. We are, though, being subject to the tyranny of fear tactics set forth by the GOP during election periods that would have the electorate compliantly relinquish further civil liberties for fear of another terrorist attack while policies favoring unhinged corporate expansion are set in place; the goal, I suppose, is to have John McCain gain the White House with his Creationist, gun- toting running mate and initiate the permanent marginalization of the American People. Sad to say, but we have, as a collective, been swayed to vote against what you'd think were our obvious interests. 9/11 has become a rhetorical ploy to convince voters that this is no time to worry about constitutionally assured rights to life, liberty, happiness; the terrorists are coming to get us. One admires Keith Olbermann's remarks on the GOP's obscene usurpation of the anniversary as a means to gain power.

What should be a time for us all to drop our political acts and come together to not just mourn but to recommit to values and principles that make America honestly great is now an excuse for the party of Tired White Men to pull every fire alarm in the communities we live in; their displays of splintered patriotism and sluggish symbolism resembles the worst performance art piece one could witness, but without even the benefit of an explanatory irony. It might be sugggested that this is the death rattle of a party that no longer has relevance, but what I'm afraid of is that the GOP might take the rest of us down into their grave with them.