March 23, 2007

it can--and does--happen in America

The exact reason I abhor government secrecy and the "war on terror" is described in this op-ed in the Washington Post.

Liberty is rarely taken away from a population all at once. Invasion from outside, or a coup from inside are about the only times that happens. More often, it is eroded over years in what appear to be small concessions... a little more unrestricted authority for police here, a little more censorship there. Twisting language to turn someone with a differing opinion into a dissenter.

The most obvious recent example of this is the yellow "Support the Troops" ribbons on every Republican's car. Anyone who does not "support the troops" must hate America because... well, because who would oppose the brave men and women who risk their lives for our own security and freedom and way of life? The implication is that you can not support the troops while opposing the war, and this is dangerous thinking within our republic. It implies that if you do not support one political idea, you are un-American and un-patriotic.

When you take subtle, insidious ideology control through language and symbols, and you match it with decreasing restrictions on the power of law enforcement, you start on a slippery slope toward totalitarianism.

2 comments:

writtenwyrdd said...

Why is it that the average intelligent person allows themselves to be swayed by this trend? I spotted it immediately, and watched with my jaw hanging open while the Iraqi war was engineered out of nothing, and people forgot that Saddam hadn't a thing to do with 9/11.

Gene said...

Despite it's numerous flaws and the uncountable deaths that have come of it, the Iraq war was brilliantly timed. People were still in shock over 9/11 and looking for some kind of answer. Don't forget that most politicians (except Barbara Lee) on both sides of the aisle voted for the war at the beginning.

So while many of us were against it from the beginning, there were an awful lot of people who were itchin' for a fight of some kind. Given that kind of emotion it's not hard to steer people where you want to go.