Call for Impeachment
Posted by honestpoet on December 19, 2006
I’ve been devouring a book I picked up the other day at the grocery store: Jimmy Carter’s Our Endangered Values. It’s hard to put down. It’s an easy read; he’s got an amiable, yet authoritative, voice. He knows his stuff.
In the book he details his own religious background and beliefs (which, in the past, I would have found difficult to get through, but these days I find myself more tolerant…I may find it a bit silly, but at least it’s not malignant); he goes into the development of the influence of the Religious Right, the erosion of the separation of religion and politics (which caused him to sever his ties with the convention which he’d belonged to for decades) and then outlines the precepts and characteristics of fundamentalism. Some of them are angering enough, like the insistence on the subservience of women (despite the ample evidence that in early Christianity women were on an equal footing with men), and the denial of importance of environmental protection. But by far the scariest of them is the end-time philosophy that has them fomenting conflict between Israel and the rest of the Middle East. These folks not only believe that the Rapture is near (despite Christ’s insistence that no man knows the day, no man knows the hour) but actually think it’s their job to speed it on its way.
And this brings me to one of the ugliest aspects of redemption theology. Now, like I’ve said, I understand the desire, like my sister feels, to believe in Heaven, so you can imagine that you won’t be separated forever from your loved ones. (Of course, as I tell my children often, wanting something does not make it so.) But my sister doesn’t believe in the Devil or in Hell. She gets no juice out of imagining anyone suffering forever in a lake of fire. But these fundies, they do. In fact, I think they like that idea more than the idea of spending eternity on bended knee in the Lord’s presence (in fact, I think by their actions they make it clear that their knees don’t bend very well, anyway.) Like fundamentalists of any sect, they read scriptures selectively, and ignore those that don’t fit their ego-driven purposes. The Book of Revelations is the ravings of a lunatic, but it’s the part of the Bible they value the most, because it’s full of the images they thrive on: conflict, and the suffering of the Other (the unbelievers). They ignore the many injunctions in both the Old and New Testaments to be kind, generous, non-violent, to leave judgment to the Almighty.
This is what concerns me most about the current administration. These are the nuts that are running the country. Pres. Carter’s book details all the things that they’ve done to set us back, to undo progress in terms of international relations, social justice, environmental protection, personal freedom, that had been made by world leaders, including US presidents, over the last 60 or so years. And a lot of their actions he describes as illegal. And he should know.
That’s why I think we need to get serious about urging both our Democratic and our Republican legislators to impeach both Pres. Bush and VP Cheney. I’m concerned not only about the damage they could do in the next two years, but I’m also concerned, as are others, about the precedent that their behavior is setting. Congress should have impeached Reagan for the Iran-Contra scandal. Instead, they let it slide, and now we’ve got this mess. The Constitution was written with human nature in mind, with the understanding that when power rests in the hands of too few individuals, it will always be misused. It’s the duty of Congress to keep these folks in check. It’s time they did their job. But they won’t do it unless we demand that they do it. They’re afraid of being perceived as wasting time on revenge. But this isn’t revenge. This is what’s necessary to ensure the continuation of our democracy, and also to rehabilitate our standing in the international community, something that sorely needs doing. Right now most of the world sees America as their greatest threat. And I’m afraid they might be right.
So please, write your representatives. Encourage them to pursue impeachment, not on the grounds of payback, but to protect America, for the next two years, and long into the future.
If you’ve never written your representatives and don’t know where to start, you can figure that out here. They do usually read emails, but paper letters carry even more weight.
And in case you’re still not sure that this war is an unholy mistake, watch this (with thanks to whig at cannablog).