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It never ceases to amaze me that the anniversaries of the bombings of the Alfred P. Murrah building in Oklahoma City and the collapse of the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, both coincide with Patriots' Day--this year being the 235th anniversary of the battles of Lexington and Concord, sparking America's war for independence (which will evolve into a revolution that will inspire many other oppressed peoples to fight for their own freedom). But instead of joy, I feel sadness and anger. My anger stems from the lack of knowledge about our nation's founding by the general public and the concurrent co-opting of its founding by the right for its own political gain. Sadness stems from the general apathy from the general public.

I was 13 years old and living in NJ when Timothy McVeigh, an Army veteran, anti-government extremist, and one-time security guard, ran a truckload of explosives into the Alfred P. Murrah building, just 4 days shy of his 27th birthday, killing 168 people, including 19 pre-schoolers, in retaliation for the government's handling of the Waco Siege two years prior. I know, I know, you guys already know about him. I needed perspective. But I digress. I had no direct ties to any of the victims or their families, other than that they, like me, were Americans. We were in the same boat. We breathed the same air, and got our food from the same soil (metaphorically speaking). It made me question why a supposedly just, loving, and merciful God could permit something so horrible to happen.

And yet, we fast forward 15 years, and we see the same hateful, extremist rhetoric from Hannity, Limbaugh, Beck, Boortz, Levin, and Savage. Hatred of women, minorities, and the LGBT community. Hatred of Muslims and atheists. Hatred toward the government. Hatred of intellectuals.
You have Hannity calling roomful of his acolytes and fans "Timothy McVeighs" and armed militias assembling in DC and Virginia, fearful that Obama will seize their guns, and preparing for war (Curious, as since the president is a law professor, he knows that the 2nd amendment is constitutional, and cannot rule it null and void.) Is this the country that we want our children to inherit, or can we make a better world?

Originally posted to jerseyboyblue on Mon Apr 19, 2010 at 04:07 PM PDT.

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