THE DAY AFTER
So Steven found this Howard Zinn article from a post on Daily Kos. Since it was written by (as he put it) "my boy," he sent the link along. I had already posted my July 4th thoughts, so I have saved it for something to think about today - the day after.
The essay is from Zinn's forthcoming book "A Power Governments Cannot Suppress" to be released this November (and, yes, this in itself was the best news I got all day! I'll be placing it in my Amazon.com shopping cart ASAP for pre-order) and talks about what it means, in his mind, to be a "patriot." The following is what struck the most dramatic chord with me: (I encourage you to read the entire essay - it's not that long - by following the link at the bottom of the post)
"Should Americans welcome the expansion of the nation's power, with the anger this has generated among so many people in the world? Should we welcome the huge growth of the military budget at the expense of health, education, the needs of children, one fifth of whom grow up in poverty? Instead of being feared for our military prowess, we should want to be respected for our dedication to human rights. I suggest that a patriotic American who cares for her or his country might act on behalf of a different vision. Should we not begin to redefine patriotism? We need to expand it beyond that narrow nationalism that has caused so much death and suffering. If national boundaries should not be obstacles to trade-- some call it "globalization"--should they also not be obstacles to compassion and generosity? Should we not begin to consider all children, everywhere, as our own? In that case, war, which in our time is always an assault on children, would be unacceptable as a solution to the problems of the world. Human ingenuity would have to search for other ways."
Once again Zinn asks the important questions and the answers will guide this country, and the world, for decades to come. I would argue that during no other time in U.S. history has this country been on such a globally devastating, self-destructive, power trip as we are in these modern times. So what are we going to do about it? Will you do the work to change the course of our future?