I attended a rally and hearing yesterday in support of Washington State Senate Joint Memorial (SJM) 8016, which would, if passed by the Washington State Legislature, call on the US Congress to begin a thorough and uncompromising investigation of actions by the Chief Executive, and the Vice of that office, that could lead to impeachment...
You can find a photo album of the event here.
After thinking about yesterday's events, the rally and the hearings, I have realized that they were a very profound experience for me.
During the hearings, I listened to the testimony of the expert witnesses and my fellow citizens as they urged the Senate Committee to adopt this bill (SJM 8016). The testifiers told their truths and then thanked the Senators for their work and for listening.
I felt a great sense of pride for being not only a Washingtonian, but also, an American. But the reasons for my feelings of pride were not the usual feelings of pride in country. They were only due to the courageous and grave actions of my fellow citizens, and a few of my elected officials, to confront the wrongs of my government. My fellow citizens and elected officials came together to discuss the very serious and dangerous time we live in. A time when the actions of the office of the Chief Executive are contrary to what is good and right, as well as contrary to both domestically and internationally recognized legal agreements.
As I listened to the testimony I realized that to investigate the president is the right thing to do, and without question. There is no way, indeed, to justify not investigating the actions of this man. These are actions which have cost us so dearly - so much in economic strength, as well as in human life and moral principle.
To turn a cold shoulder and say that there are more important things to do is an extraordinary breach of responsibility and would set a grievous and dangerous precedent.
As I listened to the convincing testimony I thought about how great it was to be among my fellow citizens and to be taking part in this momentous activity - and I was sure that the passage of this important memorial was an eventuality which I could look forward to with great certainty!
To be honest, there was some doubt (yes I am jaded by the horrors committed by my government - in my name,) but the doubt was very minimal (at the time.) After all, the testimony was truthful and accurate and highly persuasive.
So, with some doubts in mind, I couldn't help but think about what might happen if this memorial doesn't gain approval in the full Senate and isn't, subsequently, forwarded to the US Congress with the express importance of approval of the Washington State Legislature. What if? Indeed, what then, I asked. And that set me to wondering, and maybe even worrying a little.
"What then" is where I am still. What if Bush escapes after 8 years without being impeached, or even investigated, for the grievous and heinous trespasses upon civil rights, upon privacy, and indeed upon the very fabric of humanity itself - what then?
A very real question came to me then. I asked myself, do I want to be part of a nation that has no respect for humanity, no respect for civil rights, no respect for the very Rule of Law that has ordered civil society for hundreds of years? Do I want to live under tyranny and oppression? Well, of course not!
Well then, what can I do? What can I do to avoid being part of and contributing to this government? Well, I could move. I could go North, I could go to Canada. I could go South to Mexico, or Central - or South America. I could go to Europe. Yes I could, probably, if I put my mind and energy toward it. The government, which belongs to me has betrayed me, and I have very good reason to reject and abandon it.
But there is more to it than that. As much as I disagree with the government that belongs to me, I feel kinship with the Land that I belong to. Indeed, I feel a belonging to this land, not only Olympia, or Washington State, but the whole of America (much of which I have had the opportunity to visit in travel.) I was born an American (in Minnesota, specifically) and I belong to this land - but I do not belong to the government - no, it is the government that belongs to me, and it is supposed to be here to serve me.
But it is not serving me. And by allowing the government to run rough shod over me, over humanity and over the land - I am not doing justice to that which I belong.
I won't leave. I belong to the land! I will stay and I will resist the onslaught of tyranny, oppression and fascism.
I will rise up and with a clear voice armed with the truth, I will defend myself, my fellow human beings and the very land, to which I owe this life.
cross-posted at OlyBlog and Daily Kos