One of 300 Million Takes a Stand

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Against
the tremendous news coming out of New Orleans, the fact that our
local paper, the Odessa American, finally published on September
first (on the editorial page, no less) my letter in support of Cindy
Sheehan is a pretty trifling event, but I was intensely grateful
that the letter was accepted and that at last I am on record locally
as firmly on the anti-George W.B. side of that fence Cindy talks
about.

Here's
the letter:

Editor
Odessa
American
Odessa,
Texas

Dear
Editor:

Cindy
Sheehan has, as far as I am concerned, smoked out those of us who
have been lying low with respect to this war, with our argument
that that is the way to preserve the local peace and avoid offending
friends who see the thing differently.

Cindy
repeated one of her favorite points on the Internet:

"If
you fall on the side that is pro-George and pro-war, you get your
ass over to Iraq and take the place of somebody who wants to come
home. And if you fall on the other side that is against this war
and against George Bush stand up and speak out."

So
I shall. I have written against the war and against the Bush-Cheney
foreign policy on the Internet, but not locally. Now is the time.
We should get out of Iraq as fast as humanly possible. There is
no way to "end it right." That will never happen. Just
get out. If democracy means anything, it means the right of a people
to determine its own political destiny without being shoved around
by outsiders dealing wholesale death. If Iraq wants Muslim law,
civil war, and God knows what else, who are we to tell them nay?
Do we want anyone doing that to us?

I
went to war in 1944 without enthusiasm but convinced it was necessary.
I continued to hold that view through the dropping of the atom bombs
on Japan and for some years thereafter, but I no longer do. The
atom bombs were the single greatest war crime this nation committed,
with the fire-bombing of Japan's paper-and-wood cities perhaps a
second. I saw Japan in 1945: a much reduced nation that had apparently
learned its lesson: war is a government-sponsored suckers' game
with the privileged few risking the lives of the no-account many
for exceedingly doubtful purposes.

Frank
Rich of the New York Times posted a fine article on the Times's
Internet site recently lambasting George & Co and supporting
Cindy. He says the attack-dog slimers laid on by the Bush cabal
who are attacking her for her "wacko opinions" and "bad
language" will get nowhere. They carefully avoid talking about
Casey Sheehan, Eagle Scout and patriot, dead at 23 in Iraq, because
they can't. But Casey's story is the one that registers with the
people, who are turning away from Bush in droves.

Cindy
Sheehan is right on this one. She may be attracting the usual radical
lefties and so on, but that is nothing to the point. The war is
unnecessary, illegal, and immoral and should stop. Cindy has that
clearly in view, and now it appears that even the New York Times
is looking at the situation with new eyes. May the Lord open more
eyes and preserve Cindy in her great mission.

~
Tom White

I
have had three responses so far, 24 hours after the letter was published.
One was from an old friend complimenting me on the letter and saying
he couldn't do the same because of what his (wealthy) clients might
think. The other was word from a tennis buddy of my wife's that
she applauded the letter, and the third was from a senior gentleman
from nearby Midland, where George lived longer than he did in Odessa
and where he found his bride, Laura Welch. In a call to me the Midlander
made reference to this "gangster administration" that
is wrecking us, and he was clearly worked up about the malfeasances
of his former townie.

None
of this amounts to a movement that will give Karl Rove shivers,
but it's something, and it has at least lightened my heart. At last
my silent skulking days are over here locally, and I am wondering
how some more might get done.

Meanwhile,
New Orleans. May the Lord have mercy on the benighted citizens left
behind in the rush out of that city. It appears perhaps that no
one else will. Can it be – is it at all possible – may
one hope – has the hour finally come – when George Bush
will get his just deserts and be bumped finally and permanently
out of Air Force One so that he can't overfly any more disaster
areas and then rush back to Crawford to say stupid things and have
a round of golf? Or are we to forever see lack of merit elevated
to grandeur, incompetence high on a throne of royal state, and smirking
malevolence on view in the very highest place? Pray the Powers of
heaven that this ugly reign will come to an end somehow; pray that
sanity will return to America, and we can openly and joyously repudiate
our ghastly empire and send the architects of it somewhere else
than here. Devils Island, anybody?

We
have worshipped Mammon long enough and played marbles with other
Mammon worshippers to see who is the most heathenish. Time now to
turn around and return to being the Christian (I do not mean Christian
Zionist, God knows) nation we used to be, before we all got so shamefaced
about owning up to our commitment to the Lord and also (I shall
say as a Catholic) for some of us, Our Lady, the Lord's mother and
ours, the Patroness of all the Americas. I don't think any other
course will begin to right our national boat and make us seaworthy
for the future. The thing we've been doing, chasing all around the
world seeking dominance and profit, is the devil's (Mammon's) game
for sure, and I want none of it anymore. None.

Speaking
of skulking, as I have above, I for one am all-fired tired of forever
suppressing my religious understanding of the present international
mess. I believe that it is a clash of religions, not of civilizations,
and I don't mean Christian against Islamist but God-fearer against
Unbeliever. The latter, by definition is always in the service of
the Anti-Christ. And I further fear that our awful regime, while
flying the false flag of Christianity and conservatism, is in fact
a Mammonite show from top to bottom and as about as Christian as
Nero – worse than Nero, in fact, because at least Nero wasn't
a hypocrite calling himself a Christian.

September
5, 2005

Tom
White [send him mail]
writes from Odessa, Texas. He is the author of Bill
W., A Different Kind of Hero: The Story of Alcoholics Anonymous

(2003),
and the newly-published Lost
in the Texas Desert
.

Tom
White Archives

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