We Forget To Remember
By Sheila Samples
09 May, 2007
The gutters are clogged with the dead
The ones who couldn't join in
The others refusing to sing
The ones who are losing their voice
The ones who've forgotten the tune.
Bless America," Harold Pinter, January 2003
generations had every reason to believe those following them would step
into the breach and continue the vigil over this nation's Constitutional
freedoms and, if necessary, fight to preserve them. They believed, like
George Washington warned -- "Government is a "force; like
fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment
should it be left to irresponsible action." And they remembered,
from generation to generation. Unfortunately, those following our generation
will have no such luxury.
We blew it.
We forgot to remember when
history goes around, it inevitably comes back around. We forgot to remember
that the U.S. Constitution is the beating heart of the United States
and, from its inception, was designed to protect the freedoms and liberties
of "we the people." However, Supreme Court Justice Antonin
Scalia maintains that the Constitution is a "dead"
document, and says he "cringes" when it is referred to as
"living." Vice President Dick Cheney, the duck-hunting buddy
Scalia unconstitutionally installed in the White House in the 2000 election
coup must agree, since he refuses to abide by even one of its strictures.
Nobody is more adept at forgetting
to remember than Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, or “Fredo,”
as Bush calls him. Remember Fredo -- Michael Corleone's dumb-as-dirt,
totally controlled brother in the “Godfather” series? The
nickname is a perfect fit for Gonzales, who cannot recall what he had
for breakfast this morning. The one thing he knows for certain -- the
Constitution is "an outdated document" -- quaint and old-fashioned,
but of no use in Fredo's world of abuse and torture and trickle-down
And President George Bush,
who flies into a rage when he feels his will -- his God-given right
to rule -- is being tested, holds this living document of American liberty
in utmost contempt. In Dec. 2005, when Bush was determined to renew
and expand the destructive USA Patriot Act, an aide reminded him that
invasion into citizens' private lives underminded the Constitution.
exploded -- "Stop throwing the Constitution in my
face," he screamed, "It's just a goddamned piece of paper."
Right then. At that moment,
Bush should have been removed from office. Can anyone make the case
that Bush deserved to remain at the helm of this nation for even 10
seconds after spewing such treasonous hate and filth? Lest we forget,
not once, but twice, Bush stood before the Chief Justice of the Supreme
Court, his hand on the Bible, and parroted, "I do solemnly swear
that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United
States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend
the Constitution of the United States."
Lest we forget, that 35-word
oath is required of all elected presidents, and can be found in Article
II, Section I, Clause 8 of the U.S. Constitution.
The Constitution is so vital
for keeping this republic on track that those who work for the government
-- all three branches -- to include the vice president, each member
of both houses of Congress, unelected Supreme Court justices, and military
personnel must take similar oaths. Supporting the Constitution -- defending
it against all enemies, both foreign and domestic -- is literally their
job description. All else is political folly.
Surely Americans must know
that a crisis without precedent is underway in this country. The first
target in the Straussian neocon's war
of terror was the Constitution and, by extension, the American
people. We are hurtling headlong into tyranny and, as Harold Pinter
so aptly put it -- those whom we elected to protect both us and the
Constitution have either lost their voices or seem to have forgotten
It's all politics all the
time. Those on the right champion the suppression of free speech and
assembly. Those on the left are equally to blame; complicit in their
silence, although they know Bush's war is but another "option on
the table" to keep the populace cowering in irrational fear for
political gain. Neither side seems willing to admit there's a big difference,
both legal and ethical, between asking citizens to die for their country
-- and demanding they "kill" for their country...
since 9-11 has been one bad-tempered tantrum after another. Bush has
executed the office of the president every single day over the past
six years, just as he promised -- faithfully, relentlessly. As we stare
dazedly over the blood-sodden landscapes of two continents, we remember
-- too late -- the only thing Bush ever did in his entire life with
any enthusiasm was "execute."
It's time for Americans to
actually read the "Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing
Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA
Patriot Act) Act of 2001 (preceding generations recognize
this as the "Enabling Act"), and the Military
Commissions Act of 2006, which completes the loop of oppression,
revokes the right to
habeas corpus not only for detainees, but for anyone Bush
or Fredo labels an “enemy combatant,” including legal US
citizens. This destructive act places the "Commander Guy"
at the helm of the executive panthean where he is bound only by his
imagination when it comes to detaining, torturing and murdering other
Continued compliance with
such venal madness is no longer an option on the people's table. Elected
officials must do more than jerk the Constitution out of their pockets
and wave it in the faces of their opponents as they rip off some really
neat sound bytes and posture for the media. Perhaps if they actually
read the Constitution, they would discover what they forgot to remember
-- they have no choice but to impeach the entire cabal for their absolute
despotism, illegal actions, lies, and filthy war crimes.
It's in their job description.
And then we should revive
of Independence so we can get on with restoring this once
great republic to its former grandeur -- an ethical and political entity
that derives its powers from the consent of the governed.
is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information
Officer. She is a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.
Contact her at [email protected].
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