America… I Apologize!

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My fellow Americans, it is with a heavy heart that I must confess. I have transgressed. I have committed the most heinous crime of our great land. I have been… hang on… OK…. the lawyer firm, which represents me, Dewey, Cheatem and Howe, has plea-bargained my sentence. If I plead guilty, I will not be charged for high treason for wearing the u201CBush is a Moron T-Shirtu201D when last I visited Washington, DC. You see, I must admit that I have been… thinking!

My name is Thomas Chartier and I am a think-a-holic. I have been thinking, openly even!

Please dear readers, forgive me. I didn’t know it was wrong until I learned from our Great President and Decider, George W. Bush that thinking is unacceptable. Now I know. Of course, ignorance of the law is no excuse… unless you’re The President. I’ve been a blatant scofflaw for years.

As decreed by The Burning Bush, thou shalt not think! On Friday, September 15, President Bush stood in the sunshine of the White House Rose Garden to issue his u201Cbullu201D on the weighty subject of Thought Crime.

Thinking. Evidently that is what The Decider does… by thinking big thoughts, Bush negates our need to think at all. Awfully decent of him. Although so far, I haven’t seen any evidence of thinking in George W. Bush. Maybe he only does it when he’s having a power lunch with God.

My evil ways started a long time ago… as a spry young whippersnapper. I learned to… read! I studied. I have even read such ancient frivolity as The US Constitution, The Bill of Rights, The Declaration of Independence, The Foreign Intelligence and Surveillance Act, The Geneva Conventions! Shame! Shame! Shame! Will all great Neptune’s ocean wash this shame clean from my hands? No way in Hell! I’ve been… thinking!

Thinking got me into hot water. I entertained crazy notions: I became mad as hell and wasn’t going to take it anymore! Enraged at the networks for feeding me tripe, I recycled my television! Out the window it went, crashing several stories below on the sidewalk. The collateral damage was negligible. Some neighborhood hoodlums fought over the useless parts.

That was how low I had fallen: I had an addiction to using my brain! I preferred thinking to blankly staring at a $3,000 HDTV flat screen TV!! OK, OK, I’m lying. So what? Why, is that not against the law? I can’t afford a $3,000 TV and you all know it. I tossed out my old Zenith black and white. For those of you who are young, TV used to come in two colors, black and white. No, no, no! I don’t mean like last year’s iPods! I mean the picture was a black and white image. Anyway, I tossed it out. I preferred a book to The Man Show! Shocking isn’t it?

Disgraceful! I have been using my brain rather than simply allowing The Shrub to fill it up with balderdash. Thinking has led me astray down the path of enlightenment. Well, that simply won’t do in the Modern America! Therefore I make the following pledge.

I promise faithfully that never, ever again will I doubt that:

  1. I can make enough TATP (triacetone triperoxide) from household chemicals to blow up an airplane in the airplane lavatory!
  2. Islamo-Facists are hiding under my bed and in my closet!
  3. Iraq is better off today than it was in February of 2003.
  4. The Taliban has been defeated in Afghanistan.
  5. We are safer now than before 9/11.
  6. Torture generates true confessions.
  7. The Geneva Conventions are u201Cquaint.u201D
  8. Illegal wiretapping is keeping us safe.
  9. They hate us for our freedoms.
  10. President George W. Bush speaks to God.
  11. Spreading democracy by murdering thousands of innocent civilians is a good thing.

I’m so ashamed I ever questioned The Word of The Almighty Decider-in-Chief. My only excuse… I was… thinking!

My lawyers assure me I will not be charged for doubting the truths listed 1—11, above. All I have to do is sign a confessional… freely given… to the crime of thinking. And if I name three other people who have committed the same offense, the feds won’t press charges. Sorry Lew. Sorry Mike (in Tokyo) Rogers. I know you’d do the same for me. And so, so sorry Thomas Jefferson. You’ll be sent to Gitmo retroactively. I can’t hold my breath for very long. I haven’t had the time to adjust to the technique of water boarding. No hard feelings? Besides, I’m not ready for a vacation at the Gitmo Resort and Spa. I want to go straight home to my TIVO and La-Z-Boy recliner. Where’s my Soma?

So dear readers, save your selves from my fate! Save your children! It’s not too late. Plug in the X-box! Catch every episode of American Idol! Never miss an installment of FOX news! Use those newspapers to wrap fish only! Burn your books! Boycott the libraries! Don’t read subversive columnists! Don’t read… ME!

I am guilty… of thinking. Whew! Boy, I feel so much better now that I got that out!

Elizabeth Gyllensvard edited and contributed to this article.

Tom Chartier [send him mail] played lead guitar in legendary Los Angeles punk band The Rotters for 26 years until their final appearance in January of 2004. He has lived in Tokyo and Los Angeles. Currently he resides somewhere in the Caribbean.

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