November 19, 2006

Anyone else bothered by this?

I don't listen to the weekly Presidential radio addresses anymore, ever since I grew so horribly disenchanted with the quality of a Yale education as exhibited by the current occupant of the Oval Office, but I still check the transcripts regularly to see if he says anything interesting/disturbing.

Last weekend one particular quote leapt out at me, which you may have seen making the rounds on teh internets:
"One freedom that defines our way of life is the freedom to choose our leaders at the ballot box. We saw that freedom earlier this week, when millions of Americans went to the polls to cast their votes for a new Congress. Whatever your opinion of the outcome, all Americans can take pride in the example our democracy sets for the world by holding elections even in a time of war."
President George W. Bush
Now, please feel free to tell me I'm hyper-sensitive or over-reacting, but is anyone else concerned that our President seems to suggest that we should be proud of our democracy holding elections in a time of war?

I certainly don't disagree with this sentiment as I am indeed proud of us every time we have a peaceful election, yet it's alarming to me that our President seems to imply we should be grateful we were given the opportunity to vote at all; that GWB is expecting some form of gratitude that he hasn't declared marshal law.

The United States has a long history of holding elections in times of war much more dire than the current circumstances, and with leaders with whom there was demonstrable dissatisfaction. The troubling aspect of GWB's statement is that it is something he felt needed to be said. Me, I do take it for granted that America holds elections because that's what we do, it's who we are. An election for us isn't in the realm of the optional, it doesn't only happen when there aren't more important things to consider. If the day ever comes when a sitting President refuses to hold elections that are a referendum on his running of a war because of that very war, that would be America's Rubicon; a line once crossed that signals the end of the Republic.

For our President to mention the unmentionable merely points out that it was indeed mentionable after all. And for GWB to note how proud we should be that we got to have elections this fall instead draws my attention to how dangerous a threat to America the far-right agenda truly is.


At 11:58 AM, Anonymous Mom said...

You have put your finger on my greatest fear. Will there be an election for our next president in 2008? Was this comment Chimpy's way of introducing the concept of postponing elections "in wartime?" Mind you, Congress has not declared this a war but the war on terror is ubiquitous. Will the American people in their sloth protest the postponement of elections should it be decreed? I fear that the republic has been mortally wounded during this presidency. The public has tamely accepted unthinkable abuses of their freedom by the government in the name of security.If the Democratic Congress does not act to undo the damage we have indeed long passed the Rubicon. Mom


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