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A Voice in the Wilderness

As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there's a twilight where everything remains seemingly unchanged, and it is in such twilight that we must be aware of change in the air, however slight, lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness. -- William O. Douglas

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Obama's Speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention

Part I

Part II

E pluribus unm - Out of many, one

This is Senator Barack Obama's speech delivered at the 2004 Convention. I remember watching it and thinking to myself, "what if?"

After John Kerry's loss, I soon dismissed the thought and became even more disheartened as I watched the Democratic leadership continue to recoil under Bush's reign.

Where the head goes, the ass must follow...

I was appalled at the News media's complicity. But then again, their self-serving reticence - while cowardly, was nonetheless understandable. They found themselves systematically denied access at the White House Briefing Room and were further punished by being kept out of the daily loop if they ever dared to report anything out-of-sync with the Bush & Company party line or presented news that made the administration look bad.

I saw the rise of privately owned Faux news networks with their biased delivery of sensationalized hatred and lies as dictated by the White House. These panderers who were anything but 'fair and balanced' enjoyed a very comfortable and unlimited access to the White House. Moreover, since the deregulated cable industry gave rise to entertainment driven news, the rest had to follow pundits' lead in order to retain their market share. In short, the real news media became George W. Bush's abused housewife.

"Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!" - The Wizard of Oz

I became frightened at how easily the Neo-conservatives - with Karl Rove at the helm - were able to damage the Constitution simply because they controlled this nation with fear & smear tactics, mis-truths, half-truths and lies.

I blogged about it and I never felt so dismayed because, logic failed in the face of fear and paranoia. I realized what it was like for patriotic Americans to be derided for questioning the insanity of a war based on lies and deception. I was reminded of the Red scare days of Eugene McCarthy and those resurrected themes used so cunningly by the Fascists of Nazi Germany. I saw people's right to privacy violated as the government actively engaged in spying on its citizens - under the auspices of 'national security.' It all turned out to be nothing more than a thinly veiled tool for the paranoid neo-cons to keep an eye on anyone who disagreed with their agenda.

"This isn't Kansas anymore Toto..."- Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz

I was disgusted by the hijacking of religion. It became a time when God and Apple pie were wrapped in the flag and crammed down the throats of anyone who dared to disagree. I saw good people alienated, discriminated against and silenced by 'God fearing' Bible-thumpers whose agenda was to make this one Nation under their perverted interpretation of God's word.

They could cry for an unborn child while simultaneously condoning another Human Being's torture and state-sanctioned execution. I've never understood how such seemingly decent people could cry for the rights of the unborn and yet turned a blind eye to the reality that 18 million American children go to bed every night with hunger pangs in their stomachs. Such is the world of the color-by-numbers evangelicals who pick and choose biblical chapter and verse while simultaneously ignoring the demands for social justice as set forth by the New Testament's messiah.

Because of what I have seen over the past seven years, I am convinced George Bush will go down in the History books as the worst president ever. For those who do not agree with me I say time will tell and I ask Dr. Phil's famous question;

"How's that working for you?"

We have gone from being a country that had a surplus when Dubya entered office only to watch us incur a phenomenal debt - from an unjust war; a war that our children and grand children's generations will be burdened with paying off. We have seen unprecedented abuses of power where, with one stroke of the pen, this president issues 'findings' that brazenly side-steps congressional legislation. In doing so, he undermines our founding fathers prescription for checks and balances and the separation of power. He ignores and even condones flagrant violations of the law and then pardons cronies despite their having been tried & convicted. By doing so, he ignores the very Constitution he swore to uphold. The world is more unstable than it ever was before; our planet is over-heating; the price of fuel has sky-rocketed; people can no longer afford to buy a home; children continue to starve; unemployment is on the rise; jobs are being exported; tax breaks are being given to the rich and America's standing in the world is in a downward swirl and the list of egregious violations goes on and on.

There are those that look at things the way they are, and ask why? I dream of things that never were, and ask why not? - Bobby Kennedy

Three years have passed and I am beginning to see hope where there once was none. It is no longer unfashionable to be a Liberal and I am proud for what Obama has dared to do. He has stood out, ahead of everyone and shown that Democrats are Human Beings and issues we care about really do have value and moreover, there is nothing wrong with caring for our fellow Human Beings. There is nothing wrong in working for social justice.

We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these is life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness... The Declaration of Independence

I admire Senator Obama for his resolve and I thank him for offering hope where there once was none.

There is not a Liberal America and a Conservative America. There is The United States of America. - Barack Obama

I recently found myself asking once again, "what if?" and the answer that keeps coming back is, "why not."

Highlights of the speech


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