You say you want a revolution?
You want to shoot your neighbor before he shoots you? Step over blood and brains spattered on the sidewalks? Stare into the tear-streaked eyes of orphans and widows, and follow funeral processions because… why? You didn’t like the way a vote went in Congress? You think health insurance for more than 30 million uninsured Americans and making insurance companies cover people when they’re ill is akin to Armageddon?
People, what are they putting in your water? Whatever it is, it’s a pity it isn’t a huge dose of Xanax. You need to chill the hell out. The level of mass hysteria, rage and violence over healthcare – HEALTHCARE! not torture or war or economic collapse -- just blows my mind.
You know, those of us who lean to the left end of the political spectrum had our own heartbreak, many times over, during the dark ages of the Bush-Cheney Administration. Of all the people on earth, Darth Cheney is amongst my least favorite. Yet, I never wished death on him. Despite the fact that he doesn’t represent anything for which I have any respect and I disagree with 99 percent of everything he says, and my skin crawls just at the mere sight of him, I don’t wish tragedy or death on him. To do so is just wrong. Didn’t Jesus teach you people anything?
While I understand anger and even hate for another person, I can’t quite wrap my brain around acting out violently toward another fellow American for no other reason than that I disagree with her or him. So, I’m really having a hard time wrapping my brain around the violence of last week following the passage of the healthcare bill.
Once upon a time, when people didn’t like the decisions our representatives made, they channeled their anger and outrage into voter registration and political campaigns, or even running for office themselves. But oh my, that’s so two centuries ago. Nowadays, vandalism and violence are apparently acceptable responses to philosophical disagreement.
In the week following the passage of the healthcare bill, the FBI was investigating death threats to 10 lawmakers who supported the bill. Representative Bart Stupak released some of the answering machine messages left for him. They were astounding – profane, venomous wishes of pain, illness and death. Congresswoman Louise Slaughter’s children were targeted with death threats. Her CHILDREN.
The gas line at the home of Congressman Tom Perriello’s brother was cut after some melonhead accidently posted the brother’s address on Facebook, and encouraged people to show Perriello how they felt about his support of healthcare. Perriello and his wife walked into a gas-filled home one evening last week. Along with their four small children. Apparently some folks feel it’s perfectly fine to kill children after the umbilical cord is cut.
Other disturbing acts of social de-evolution also occurred last week, including black congressman being spat on, others sent faxes of nooses, and a coffin left on Congressman Russ Carnahan’s front lawn. This, from the party that prides itself on family values. What family are we talking about here? The Manson family?
You’d think that congressional Republicans would vehemently condemn this behavior, but no, they’re too busy acting like petulant brats on a retribution rampage.
Following the healthcare vote, Senator John McCain vowed to obstruct anything Democrats supported, regardless of topic. He’s furious over the healthcare vote, so he’s taking his ball and bat and going home. And this is the man who wanted to be our President?
It gets worse.
Some anti-healthcare protestors (Does that not just sound bizarre all by itself? “Anti-healthcare”?) disrupted House proceedings last week, and as security guards attempted to contain the outburst, “dozens of Republican members of the house stood up and egged on protestors,” Congressman Barney Frank told Lawrence O’Donnell in an MSNBC interview. These “lawmakers” actually encouraged people to disobey law enforcement!
It gets still worse.
Congressional Republicans employed an obscure rule last week that requires unanimous approval before congressional committees can function. They objected to the committee hearings, which halted them on the spot. Among those committees affected: the Veterans Affairs Committee, in a hearing about ending homelessness for about 100,000 veterans; the Judiciary Committee, in the process of considering judicial nominees; and the Armed Services Committee, dealing with police training in Afghanistan; and committees working on government transparency and providing school lunches to children.
The Republicans in question had no legitimate reason to object to the hearings. They did it because they could. In other words, a good old temper tantrum -- the political equivalent of a toddler flinging himself to the ground, kicking and screaming, because he didn’t get a cookie. These are our “leaders.”
The range of behavior last week, from attempted murder of a Congressman’s relatives to the willful and meaningless disruption of governmental process, has a common denominator: disregard for the rule of law. You know what you get when the law becomes meaningless? Anarchy. All this yap and yammer about Socialism – Socialism’s a walk in the park compared to anarchy.
How close are we to anarchy’s edge? Just listen to Radical Right Wingers toss the other “R-word” around freely. Revolution. They say it right out loud, and nobody even reacts. Except our Republican “leaders,” who stand up and applaud.
Democracy means agreeing to go along with majority rule, even when you disagree. And if you want change, you do it with words, not weapons.
So… you say you want a revolution? When you talk about destruction, you can count me out.