I am scared. I don't know if I've been this scared since GW Bush was president and we were rushing to war. I looked down the barrel of that loaded and cocked gun and I saw decades of tragedy to come and I wasn't the only one. So many of us saw it and we did nothing. Okay, maybe we talked amongst ourselves and we shook our heads in disbelief and we may have written this or that and we may have prayed it wouldn't come to pass- this war begun for no apparent reason which was bound to lead to so many deaths, to so much money spent, to so much hatred in the world for the US, and which ultimately has led to more pain and suffering and loss of respect than any of us ever imagined.
The torture issue, the deaths of civilians. The destruction of our economy as schools go unfunded and people are out of work and sick people die because they don't have insurance while we spend more and more money funding a war that will never end because there is no end to a war on terror. Ever.
All of that scared me but I am even more frightened now.
I listened to a little bit of Obama's speech to the school children after I got home from my walk and it was just as it had been reported it would be- a challenge to our youth to be personally responsible, to work hard, to not let mistakes or bad grades define them but to serve to make them work harder. It was a good speech.
And then, because I am crazy, I listened to a little bit of the Rush Limbaugh show. Five minutes was enough to scare the ever-loving crap out of me. Do you ever really listen to these people? The Rushes, the Glenns?
If you just accidentally tuned into them it would be ridiculously easy just to laugh them off as ignorant, harmless bullshit. I mean, it would be if you didn't know how many people not only listen purposefully to them but believe them. Because if you know that, it's fucking scary.
I just heard Rush say that although Obama's speech to the school kids was indeed an entirely conservative speech, it was only that way because he had been forced to change his original speech which was the REAL speech he wanted to make about telling our poor, innocent children how to help our president. And then he went on a rant about how yes, this is like the food fight in Animal House and how Obama is the Dean (was it Dean?) Wormer and how all of Obama's people are the ELITISTS (and Rush can't say that word without slurring it) frat boys and prissy pants sorority girls in the movie and how Americans LOVED it when John Butarski played by, oh, what was his name? Rush asked because he couldn't remember there for a moment, oh yes, John Belushi, got food all over those elitist's elitist clothes. Americans LOVED THAT!!!!
So Rush Limbaugh is saying that America is a stoned, fucked-up John Belushi (and don't get me wrong, I do love the Belush and always will) who is bringing down the Elitist administrators, frat boys and sorority girls.
And you know what? Americans are listening to this and they are nodding their heads and they are agreeing and there are millions of these people and I am scared.
When I was in Cozumel and had that little chat with the guy from Texas who claimed that Obama was going to bring down the country with his health care bill, I had no idea what was going on. I thought it was an aberration. I even thought so when the guy sitting next to Texas Guy joined in the argument against me. I did not know that Glenn Beck was already trying to poison the waters of Obama's administration with what soon came to be lies and more lies, misrepresentations and complete bullshit.
Listen- I just heard Rush say that England has "third rate health care."
Well, gimme some of that, okay? because it's better than what my insurance provides.
It seems to me like we are quickly losing our shit here, folks. I mean, at least when Bush pushed us into war we had the recent memory of 9/11 shutting us up, making us doubt our sanity in believing that a war with Iraq might not be serving any sort of purpose, even though we knew the truth. But this- this constant attack, this constant hammering and yammering and complete dumb acceptance of the spewings coming from these, these, these IDIOTS, these MORONS, these ugly, ugly men is scaring the living daylights out of me.
And I'm beginning to think there's more than Obama's race at issue here. Sure, a great many people who listen to the hate and who incorporate it into their own thinking (and I use that term loosely) probably don't even admit that they're racists. Even to themselves. But I think there's something more going on. I think it's Obama's intelligence, his ability to speak so well and move people with his words.
People hated Clinton who was incredibly intelligent with a blind fury, too. And because he had a less-than-spotless private life, they were able to uncover and use that to attack him. But Obama seems to be exactly what he says he is- a man who loves his wife, who is faithful, who dotes on his children, who is a very good father, and they haven't been able yet to prove he wasn't born in America. So what do they have?
So they go after his policies and every move he makes and everything he says and they twist his words and they lie and they spout and they spew and they scream and people are listening and people believe them even though none of it, NONE OF IT makes any sense at all.
Okay. I just don't know what else to say. But I'm asking- what can we do? We who do have our eyes open, we who were, for perhaps the first time in our lives, proud as hell of our country when we elected Barack Obama to be our president? What do we do? How can we stop the madness? This is America and we are all allowed to say what we think. And while the crazy people are saying what they think on air and getting paid huge golden buckets of money for it, what can we do?
I'm asking because I'm scared.
How do rip the curtain off the little man on the radio? The fat little man laughing as he lies, chuckling as he rakes in his earnings?
Is it too late? Have we all gone insane already? Are the inmates running the asylum? Are we going to watch a good man be pulled down much to the detriment of our country, to the WORLD by these men? Are we?
Perhaps we have to rise up and march in the streets and if that's what we have to do, so be it. These guys are bullies and bullies are known to be scared little cowards at heart. But when they have the backing of so many people, it's not easy to bring them down.
Who's going to be the one to punch them in the nose and send them home crying?
I don't want to really hurt these people, I just want them to be exposed for the liars they are. I want them to have to admit they are liars.
Because they are scaring me with their swagger and their crap. They are scaring me with their followers and their influence. And I won't be able to live with myself if I look back and realize I did nothing, nothing at all.
I'm scared. What do I do?