Woman arrested for assaulting
84 year-old husband for
cheating on her 35 years ago.
Someone should remind President Obama that becoming a politician, even President of the U.S., does not absolve one of moral responsibility. I understand that when one becomes President, the claims and promises you made as a candidate more often than not are not easily fulfilled. Thus, while I am not happy about Obama’s failure to get us out of Iraq on time, or his reinstatement of military tribunals at Guantanamo, or his equivocating on NAFTA and FISA, or Cuba, and other such things, I understand there may be reasons for these things that I do not understand, or at least I am willing to think so. There is one area, however, where I am not inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt, allowing political expediency to trump morality.
We know now with a high degree of certainty about large areas of wrongdoing. Starting a so-called preventive “war” against a country that is no threat to you is wrong. Lying to bring such a “war” about is wrong. Killing innocent women and children in the process of that “war” is wrong. Torture is wrong. Using banned munitions like white phosphorous is wrong. Hiding prisoners from the Red Cross is wrong. War profiteering is wrong. Illegal wiretapping is wrong. Lying to Congress and the public is wrong. Doing away with habeas corpus is wrong. Keeping prisoners in prison for years without bringing charges against them is wrong. We know that all of these things happened under the Bush/Cheney administration. But have we finally arrived at a place in our history where concepts of right and wrong are now just considered “quaint,” like the Geneva Convention?
Unless I have been terribly misinformed all my life, I believe that morality has to do with the basics of right and wrong. While no one person (even the President) should be the sole judge of right and wrong, it is reasonable to suppose that the leaders in any given group would be primarily responsible for arbitrating questions of right and wrong. And it is equally reasonable to suppose that when wrongdoing is discovered these same leaders would be the most responsible for doing something about it. Unfortunately, this does not seem to be the case in our country at the moment. We have people, one in particular, going around the talk shows and radio actually boasting about his terrible wrongdoing. We have documentary evidence of torturing, even murdering prisoners, and we know beyond any reasonable doubt those who instigated our illegal “war,” our torture program, our illegal wiretapping, and so on. And yet, President Obama and his Attorney General, Eric Holder, are refusing to take any action against these wrongdoers, basically using the excuse of political expediency. This is not only itself immoral, according to U.S. and International law, it is also illegal. Unless their position changes, and soon, we can only conclude that President Obama, like President Bush before him, believes he is above the law, believes apparently, that “When the President does it, it’s not illegal.” This is not a situation in which I am prepared to give the President the benefit of the doubt. It is not an area for compromise. It is an area that cries out for justice and accountability. President Obama does not have the authority to deny us justice, although perhaps he believes he has the power to do so. Such power, if it exists at all, would be completely illegitimate, an unconstitutional theft, the claim of a dictator. I admire President Obama, and I believe that in general he has been acting mostly in the public interest, but I am not ready to proclaim him dictator, and I absolutely insist that he appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the terrible wrongdoings that we know occurred under Bush/Cheney and their collaborators. I view this as entirely non-negotiable. His failure to comply means (to me, at least) his Presidency will be forever compromised. I cannot believe he will allow this to happen but my impatience and fears grow by the day.
On a much lighter note, Rachel Alexandra, a filly, won the Preakness today, the first filly to win in about 80 years! One might think this was a great day for women… until they announced the formation of a Women’s Lingerie Tackle Football League! Yes, these women are going to play tackle football in their underwear. Their audience, and no doubt they will have one, will eagerly await costume malfunctions and hope for fights and such. Oh well… I guess it’s better than watching Christians being thrown to the lions.
“Technology is like giving an axe to an idiot.”
Via Mel Firestone (original unknown)
Unlike horses and donkeys, zebras have never been truly domesticated.