Monday, October 02, 2006

Thanks, I needed that.

Via a comment at I Shame the Matriarchy: thanks, Kristin.

As a mom, I get it. Truly, I hear you. Having seen other parts of the world that are in better or worse shape than we are, I hear you. And being fed the fuck up, sad, sorry and disillusioned, I still hear you. But there is no way on God's green earth I am ever going to give up on the people I see here. We have come too far. We have managed more since this country's inception than almost any other country on the globe by way of revolution, reform, advance and political change. Very little of this was at the hands of the government. It came from the demands and persistence of the people to see these bills enacted, to change the way we are regarded, to get something better for ourselves. You are exactly the kind of person that's needed because you're willing to say FUCK NO. Give that to your daughter. It's applicable in a lot more situations than citizenship. I won't be bullied out. God help me, but I believe in 'We the People'. I've had this classic punk song stuck in my head for the longest time. Only now am I realizing that I'm scoring the political climate, putting music to what I read and see and think about what's going on in this country.

When they kick out your front door
How you gonna come?
With your hands on your head
Or on the trigger of your gun

You can crush us
You can bruise us
But you'll have to answer to
Oh- the guns of Brixton

So maybe the Clash isn't the most articulate way to discuss the intricacies of polisci and the realities it presents: Don't fucking care. I am at leisure to say whatever I please, whenever I please. My country gave me that and I'm giving it right back to them - both barrels.


***

On a related note, if you scroll down along the blogroll, you may notice I've added a section entitled "Civil Rights/Civil Liberties." It's a bit sparse as of now, but I'm really looking for more on that right now. Besides the usual organizational suspects (PFAW, ACLU), this morning I figured: you know what, what with all the handwringing I've been hearing about how no one in the U.S. seems to be educated in Civics 101 anymore, much less basic history. And I am all about the history. So here's one I found and just started looking at: nice 'n' straightforward. "BillofRights.com."

and, may as well take advantage of the free info on the Internets: if'n you need a refresher (and I know I did): Primary Documents in American History, via the Library of Congress online.

I'd like to make this a project--self-education American civics class, and hope you'll join me. Because I think there are some people out there who could really, really use a reminder. Some of them, sadly enough, may be "representing" you right now.

So, if it's gonna be back to basics, then let's make it a positive thing. Right back to the beginning. What are we fighting for, again? Let's be absolutely clear on that, at least. We owe ourselves that much.

17 comments:

Renegade Evolution said...

I don't usually post lyrics, but...Another song I find fitting for the times and current politics:

"Listen to the victim, abused by the system
The basis is racist, you know that we must face this.
"It can't happen here". Oh yeah?
"Take a look around at the cities and the towns."

See them hunting, creeping, sneaking
Breeding fear and loathing with the lies they're speaking
The knife, the gun, broken bottle, petrol bomb
There is no future when the past soon come.

And when they come to ethnically cleanse me
Will you speak out? Will you defend me?
Or laugh through a glass eye as they rape our lives
Trampled underfoot by the right on the rise

"You call us..."....
Ich Bin Ein Auslander
Ich Bin Ein Auslander
Ich Bin Ein Auslander

Welcome to a state where the politics of hate
Shout loud in the crowd "Watch them beat us all down"
There's a rising tide in the rivers of blood
But if the answer isn't violence, neither is your silence

If they come to ethnically cleanse me
Will you speak out? Will you defend me?
Freedom of expression doesn't make it alright
Trampled underfoot by the rise of the right

Ich Bin Ein Auslander
Ich Bin Ein Auslander
Ich Bin Ein Auslander
Ich Bin Ein Auslander"

Kristin said...

Thanks, Belle. I'm always good and strident before my coffee, glad it sparked you. One of the things that I've found interesting with the formative docs versus today's climate are the charges leveled in the Declaration of Independence. It makes you wonder which George they're talking about, King or Bush. Between foreign policy, the war, HIPAA and the way he handles himself in office, there's a lot of synonymous in it.

Tuffy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Tuffy said...

Thanks for the link to your 4/14 "Secret Relief of Crisis" post. I read it a couple of times and I'm still thinking about it.

Rootietoot said...

Cheers! Thanks for all this :o)

Zan said...

I get pissed off by the fact that so many people can't even list all the rights gauranteed by the First Amendment. It's hugely important and yet....most people can't name them all. And the polls that show people think we've got too many freedoms. What? I mean...what??? People who think that saying something that offends someone or insults the government is tantamount to treason. I just want to shake them silly. Grrrr.

(Want a good 'damn the government' cd? Anti-Flag, For Blood and Empire. Most awesome. I listen to it all the damned time.)

Rootietoot said...

Alexander Hamilton said:
"I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

I think that's who said that. Someone important, anyway.

Hummingbyrd said...

Yo link game is BANANAS.

Thank you for mine.

I will stop by when I am coffenated and have an hour or so to spare and explore.

belledame222 said...

Thanks! and no prob. Welcome!

little light said...

It was Voltaire, rootietoot.

The same fellow, I believe, who said the Revolution would be over when the last politician was strangled with the guts of the last priest. So, well. Mixed bag, I guess.

Rootietoot said...

Thanks Little light- I can get the gist of the quotes but never remember who said it. Usually I just say Bejamin Franklin cuz he said lots.

Yeah. Strangle the politicians and let's make it a true democracy. Priests even. The best churches are the ones where the sermons are rotated amongst the laiety. Rah..

Tho I would draw the line and strangling the politicians with the guts of priests...no...

But you know, I think it takes all sorts of inflammatory speechifying and behavior to get points across. While I am solidly Libertarian, I totally believe Dems and Reps and Greens and whoever else have a God-given repsonsibility to make as much noise as possible about whatever cause, because if they don't, who will? I also believe in my God-given right to totally disagree with them. Even incivility is necessary, because if we are all nicey-nice about (whatever) then no attention would be drawn to the issues.
I tend to be mealy about stuff because I abhor confrontation, but I am happy to sit back and make sandwiches for who go to the front line and spit about their issues.

K. That's as close to a soapbox as you'll ever see me.

belledame222 said...

Yeah, Voltaire. The Enlightenment is also something I've been wanting to talk about more thoroughly. Its strengths and its weaknesses. Because I think that part of the reason we've reached this point is that we've collectively never adequately addressed the places where its tenets fall down; the only other option appears to be reactionary fundamentalism. There has to be a synthesis at some point. And yeah, I am talking about the...let's call it the irrational, for want of a better word. For now.

Beth said...

Thank you, BD! This post reminds me that listening to loud punk rock was the second most cathartic thing I did after that fateful day in November '04, right after I banged my head against a wall for a couple of hours.

Zan, thanks for the tip on the new anti-flag, I'm still grooving on "the terror" state over here.

Beth said...

oops, misplaced my quotes, that was supposed to be "the terror state" sorry

Alon Levy said...

The same fellow, I believe, who said the Revolution would be over when the last politician was strangled with the guts of the last priest.

He didn't say "politician," but "king." And it wasn't him, but Diderot.

belledame222 said...

thanks.

well, but it's certainly true that Voltaire was no great fan of the priests...

little light said...

Thanks, alon levy. Can't believe I misattributed that one. I always thought it was a little zealous for Voltaire...