Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Today’s newspaper actually brought good news – and from an unexpected source as far as I’m concerned. The National Association of Evangelicals has come out against torture. They endorsed a statement that says “the U.S. has crossed ‘boundaries of what is legally and morally permissible’ in its treatment of detainees and war prisoners in the fight against terror.” – Rachel Zoll, Associated Press.

The document goes on to say, “Our military and intelligence forces have worked diligently to prevent further attacks. But such efforts must not include measures that violate our own core values.”

AT LAST, Christian fundamentalists have come up with something that distinguishes them from the Islamic fundamentalists who are willing to kill and maim in the name of religion. For years, I have railed against the Christian Right hypocrisy of waving a Bible in one hand and a gun in the other. Now at last (and at least) they aren’t willing to wave a water board or a pair of electrical wires in the other.

The group that issued the paper call themselves Evangelicals for Human Rights. They stopped short of condemning the Bush administration for its fomentation of torture, but at least they took a stance that clearly says that torturing prisoners is a violation of morality. Is there hope for the day when their version of human rights could include the right of every person to chose his or her own mate, regardless of sex, or perhaps the right of everyone in the country to walk into a public building without being forced to kowtow to someone else’s version of morality/religion? But surely I go too far. Doubtless it’s best to be happy with today’s progress and not spend much energy on wishing for more.

At any rate, thanks EHR, for publicly recognizing that some policies of our government are immoral. Hopefully, we can leave it to the general public to connect the dots from government in general to leadership in particular. After all, our “government” doesn’t make, enforce or apply policy. Our elected representatives do. In this case, the leaders in the Executive Branch implemented them and those in the Legislative Branch condoned them, either actively or passively. All should be held accountable.

On a lighter note, the newspapers also brought word of our noble leader’s trip to Mexico. W was there yesterday on the last leg of his PR trip to the South and Central Americas. Yesterday he loaded a few crates of lettuce and the told the world (not America, of course, as our press doesn’t carry his more embarrassing lines) that the experience of loading the lettuce was one of the high points of his presidency. Later, speaking about our immigration policies, he said Congress was responsible for them and not him. “I’m just a simple administrator,” he said.

Well there you are -- two truths out of W’s mouth in one day. I never would have believed it, but it is indisputable. Loading lettuce truly is the high point of his presidency and who would ever dispute the second truth? – He definitely is simple.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. – M.K. Gandhi

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