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Let's make March 5 a day to support the Bush Administration
By Jeremy Reynalds
As a naturalized American citizen I'm especially proud to be a part of my adopted country. I just don't have any time for these anti-war protesters who both take every opportunity possible to denigrate the United States, as well as imply that the Bush administration is frothing at the mouth in a mad dash to go to war against Iraq.
As someone said on a radio show I was listening to earlier today, it's not that conservatives are pro-war; we're pro-peace. However, to keep the peace the launching of a pre-emptive strike against Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein is vitally necessary. After all, it's not as if we are dealing with someone whose word can be trusted. Hussein has had 12 years and broken 17 resolutions ordering him to disarm. What makes us think he's going to change now?
To believe that a Hussein behavior change is imminent is the height of naivete, although sadly there are a number of liberals out there who think that he will. I guess it just goes to prove what one well-known talk show host is fond of saying, that liberalism really is a mental disease.
The dangerous and pernicious symptoms of liberalism were really brought home to me recently when I stumbled upon the anti-war, anti-Bush, anti-everything- good- and- patriotic web site, www.notinourname.net. The operators of the site are vehemently and vocally opposing the impending war with Iraq, so much so that they've even set aside March 5 as a "National Moratorium to Stop the War on Iraq."
Here's some of what the people behind the site have planned. They're calling for everyone (www.notinourname.net/call_for_the_moratorium.html) to show their opposition "to this shameful and unjust war and their determination to stop it." And if it looks like we'll go to war before that date, they plan to move up the moratorium date.
For example, the site asks people to show their support for the anti-war movement in a variety of ways such as calling in sick to work, hanging banners at major overpasses and engaging in acts of civil disobedience at military facilities.
Professors are also being asked to cancel classes and churches have been requested to hold special services, with a further suggestion that they ask their congregations to protest at military recruiting offices and open up their doors to conscientious objectors.
Then reminiscent of the 1960's, students are being asked to plan high school walkouts as well as a variety of other campus activities.
Site operators are attempting to justify their actions by comparing the impending war with Iraq to Hiroshima. They write in part (www.notinourname.net/call_for_the_moratorium.html)
"If you had known about Hiroshima in advance, what would you have done to stop it? Today's war-makers are telling us what they plan to do. This war will visit unspeakable terror and suffering on the people of Iraq, in the name of liberating' them. It will put people all over the planet at risk, in the name of protecting them. It will, no doubt, be accompanied by even more severe repression within the U.S. against immigrants and against resisters. And it will mark another terrible step - the most horrific one yet - into a future of endless war and severe repression. It is up to the people to stop it."
Here's the problem. These individuals don't have any viable alternatives to war. Ask them what could work to contain Hussein if we don't go to war and they have no answer. Are they planning to rely on Hussein's integrity and his track record of keeping his word?
As President Bush so succinctly said in his State of the Union speech earlier this year:
"The dictator of Iraq is not disarming. To the contrary, he is deceiving ... Some have said we must not act until the threat is imminent. Since when have terrorists and tyrants announced their intentions, politely putting us on notice before they strike? If this threat is permitted to fully and suddenly emerge, all actions, all words and all recriminations would come too late. Trusting in the sanity and restraint of Saddam Hussein is not a strategy and it is not an option."
There's a statement at www.notinourname.net/call_for_the_moratorium.html that stuck in my mind. It reads, "We must act on our conscience and resist as if the future depends on it - because it does. We must inspire and organize political resistance throughout society - where we live and where we work, where we go to school and where we raise our children, where we play and where we pray."
We need to take that statement and turn it around to our perspective. I hear someone say this morning, "Well, I know there were a lot of people out there demonstrating but look at all the people who didn't turn out to demonstrate. They were at home supporting the war."
Maybe but maybe not. Some of those who stayed home may have been war supporters; some were no doubt opposed to the war. We'll never know because they were home. We have no way of ascertaining which side of the political spectrum they came down on.
With that in mind, we need to take March 5th and make it our day. Political disinvolvement benefits the other side. Send letters to your legislators telling them of your support for the Bush administration's position on Iraq; ask your pastor to hold a special service to pray for the troops who are currently in the Middle East and those who have yet to go. Hang banners of support for the war at major overpasses and consider a legal demonstration close to your local military base assuring the armed forces of your support and prayers.
Taking a lesson from the rhetoric on www.notinourname.net, whoever you are and wherever you are, cross a line you haven't yet crossed to show your support for the Bush administration's policy on Iraq.
Then consider an afternoon or evening meeting to bring together everyone who has done something earlier that day in support the just war on Hussein.
To borrow a sentence from someone else's play book, "The possibilities are endless, collective and individual. Lay something important in your life on the line, along with hundreds of thousands of others on the same day, on March 5" to support President Bush's policy on Iraq.
Contact the organizers behind www.notinourname.net at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell them what we're planning. You may also call that office at (212) 969-8058. And don't forget to pray for the individual apparently behind the site; Charles Kissinger. You may e mail him (kindly) at email@example.com
Lastly, please circulate this article to as many sites on the web and as many friends as you can. Call your local news talk radio station. I am available to do interviews. Make copies and pass them out at church, and let's make March 5 a day of prayerful patriotic fervor not one of godless, anti-American cowardice. It will happen if you get involved; the choice is up to you!
Reynalds is a freelance writer and the founder and director of Joy
Junction, New Mexico's largest emergency homeless shelter. He has a master's
degree in communication from the University of New Mexico and is pursuing his
PhD in intercultural education at Biola University in Los Angeles. He is married
with five children and lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. His work can be viewed
here and weekly at www.americasvoices.org.
He may be contacted by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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