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Discounting diverse points of view is unpatriotic

It’s taken me a few days to get over my disgust with Troy L Bunch’s letter to the editor of Feb. 12, where he suggests that citizens of this nation must unite behind a majority reelected Republican administration. Bush barely had a majority of the popular vote, yet Cheney called it a mandate from the people. Bush would never have had a first term, except for the election debacle in Florida. Even then, he did not receive a majority of the popular vote, but won through the antiquated electoral college.This country is founded on an adversarial system of checks and balances for a reason. Should a leadership come to power that does not represent the people, that leadership can be removed. It is the right of each citizen to express their opinions and protest if they feel it necessary.To discount diverse points of view is truly unpatriotic. To suppress opposition is fascist. Troy is a mere step away from fascism, as is our Republican governor in his call for dismissal of Ward Churchill and/or change of tenure structure so that suppression of First Amendment rights becomes possible. While I do not agree with Churchill’s lack of tact, I do agree with his position that the U.S. has reaped the harvest of its imperialist foreign policy. I served in the Marine Corps during “peacetime” and have personally experienced the military intimidation of Libya when our aircraft carrier group sent fighter jets and a missile cruiser into the disputed international waters of the Bay of Libya as a show of force. In addition, it is my understanding that the United States created bin Laden during Reagan’s cold war support of Afghanistan, and that Rumsfeld courted Hussein during the ’80s conflict with Iran. There is no proven connection between Iraq and 9/11, yet there is proof through years of weapons inspections and expert testimony that there were no WMD’s, contrary to the unsupported statements of Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld. These three, who were privileged as youths, managed to escape meaningful military service but as adults have no reservations about putting the lives of service people and innocent civilians at risk. They bear the responsibility for the abuses at Abu Graib and other detention facilities, yet distanced themselves through the use of private contractors. Now, only enlisted personnel will take the fall and the only change to take place is that there will be no more cameras.Republicans would have you believe that because 58 percent of “eligible” Iraqi voters (as allowed by occupation forces) actually turned up at the polls, this reflects the free will of the country. In any election there are silent protesters who do not vote. Simply because they don’t vote does not mean that they don’t exist. If you combine those nonvoting U.S. citizens with the Kerry and third party supporters, there is a majority opposition to the current administration. Further, as recent events in the Ukraine show, elections do not necessarily lead to freedom but often times protest does. Thus did women get the right to vote, child labor laws were introduced, apartheid was ended and hopefully wars will end.Just as Republicans saddled the Clinton administration with investigations through both his terms that exposed only sexual indiscretions, so should Bush and his cronies be exposed for the hypocrites and liars that they are. W stands for “warmonger” and it appears that the world is now a more dangerous place with him in power.


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