My eyes are opened. Time and again I feel like I've been awakened from a reverie, but nothing prepared me for tonight, and I can't go back. (If you haven't seen "V for Vendetta" yet, please do, and please know that this diary has a few spoilers.)
We are living on the verge of fascism. I am not afraid to say that now, and I hope that I will never be. I don't consider myself crazy for making this assertion. It's simply true.
I hope that you will be kind enough to hear me out and share with me. We must not let this moment pass.
What most convinces me of my assertion is that, today, in our national debate, the SINGULAR rebuke to any criticism, and I do mean any
, of our President, our Dear Leader, is that such criticism aids the terrorists. We may never know who these people are who are aided by our criticisms, but rest assured that we are reminded daily of their presence.
It began a few years ago when then-Attorney General John Ashcroft made the bold assertion before a Senate Committee that you were either with this Administration, or you were with the terrorists. Bush himself made repeated remarks of how nations would either be with us or against us. The language was first directed at foreign nations, then at foreigners within our boundaries, and then at all of us. We have all been given the marching orders that if we do not agree with the policies of this Administration - forcing war on poor nations, permitting rampant crime within our streets, allowing our poor to sink lower and middle class to vanish, bequeathing the great wealth of our nation to a fortunate few - then we are indeed terrorists ourselves.
And clearly the Bush Administration believes it is right in this "war" on the American people. If not, then why spend invaluable terrorist surveillance efforts investigating countless anti-war groups? Why wiretap tens of thousands of unsuspecting Americans without so much as obeying law? Why keep warning the American people of a terrorist threat every time they finally begin to see that the emperor has no clothes? Why transport who knows how many people overseas to torture them in unknown locations for god knows what reason?
Want a few quick definitions?
-A social and political ideology with the primary guiding principle that the state or nation is the highest priority, rather than personal or individual freedoms.
-An extreme form of nationalism that played on fears of communism and rejected individual freedom, liberal individualism, democracy, and limitations on the state.
-a political system in which all power of government is vested in a person or group with no other power to balance and limit the activities of the government. Fascist governments are often closely associated with large corporations and sometimes with extreme nationalism and racist activities. Modern fascism is often called "CORPORATISM".
In the story of "V for Vendetta" we witnessed a government that came to power through national crisis - a crisis the government itself secretly created. A new position of "High Chancellor" was created and given permanent authority. In the movie, a single government network told the news as the government wanted it told, even when the broadcasters knew they were lying. What was a murder the government wanted covered up became a heart attack. What was the bombing of a significant building became a planned demolition... at midnight. Human subjects were used to test chemical weapons. People's fears were played like a fiddle to keep them from realizing how oppressed they were and rising up against the oppressive regime. A humorous attack on the High Chancellor was avenged with a vicious murder. Certain people were empowered to look out for anyone violating the restrictions of free movement, much less free speech. And "faith" was spelled out on the seal of the fascist government, if nothing else as a tool to make people think that in fact the government actually had some level of faith.
[end of spoiler]
Today we learned about Bush authorizing the use of human subjects for pesticide testing. We now know that "Operation Swarmer" is just a sham to distract us from the very real problems in Iraq, and that the media have been complicit in making it out to be more than it is. We have only one network to which the Bush Administration will turn to make its case to the public (one guess which). We are being led down the road of morphing IraQ into IraN (Oceana anyone?). The ranks of our military are being filled more and more with people whose only option for financial survival is fighting a war in which they do not believe. A smaller and smaller group of people controls the words our media uses to frame our national debate, controls every branch of our government, and, in many ways, controls our own ability to stay focused on the task at hand.
And we get distracted easily. Whether it's poring over a quail hunt, arguing about censure, swift boating, capturing insurgents, shouting useless chants among ourselves, beating each other up over petty disagreements, watching the news of the latest convenience store robbery, or fearing the Next Terrorist Attack - every day we are distracted.
I'm as guilty as anyone.
And, I am convinced, we are one attack from fascism. At any moment we are only minutes from being offered the single option of permanently entrusting Dear Leader with our lives, so that he will rid us of the Great Terrorist Threat. We are just one more chemical, nuclear, or other attack away from being given the option to either obey or perish.
This is not America. We were not founded on these principles. Patrick Henry spoke proudly and with patriotism when he boomed, "Give me liberty or give me death!" We have not survived a Revolutionary War, Civil War, two World Wars, and a Cold War only to succumb to this latest threat. This is goddamned America, people.
WAKE THE FUCK UP.
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."
I'll be damned if somebody decides I can't love who I want to love. I'll be damned if somebody decides I don't have the same rights and privileges as any other red (or blue) blooded American. I'll be damned if I'm left with no other choice but to obey or perish. Give me liberty, or give me death.
If I cannot be free, then I am nothing.
Post-script - In the movie, we learn of that "one inch," that one part of ourselves that, no matter what, nobody can take away from us. I believe that in America we can never let ourselves get to a point where such a thought should even enter our minds. But should we ever reach that point, I will not succumb. If nothing else, I am inspired to be fearless.
[UPDATE: It's 12:10am, and I'm going to bed. Good night everyone!]