I was very wrong in that thinking.
The lady at this meeting was talking about how this administration was "staking his legacy on torture" and that he (Bush) was an idiot to want to change the Geneva Conventions. I interrupted her. The US government and the soldiers who DO FOLLOW them, know the conventions very very well, but they also know each and every loophole. On the whole, the US treats its prisoners on the war on terror much much better than they treat their own soldiers.
US soldiers who go to SEAR school are intentionally tortured, in the name of training, to learn what will break them. Then they send these guys out with the knowledge of not to get caught because they know what could happen to them. It makes them excellent soldiers, but it soils their humanity. The government makes these men what they are, and in those instances after war, where their training and their humanity collide....they can't get the help that they need from the VA.
The VA is completely overburdened. Congress has taken away alot of their funding...new vets aren't getting benefits at all....for almost 2 years now. The hospitals are crammed with patients, the doctors and nurses are overloaded and most have had any of the sap of human caring and kindness sucked out of them because they aren't supported at their work.
If you are in therapy at the VA....they don't try to find your root cause of your angst...they just medicate you and hope that you will quiet.
The government is totally ridiculous. The Democrats are bitching about having the war, the Republicans are bitching that we need it.....both sides say that the other is destroying America. The fact is, both sides are. If they happened to look outside of their own bubbles they would see that they are creating a huge victim cycle in the world, but most importantly in the American people themselves.
On September 30, 2001 I was in Washington DC at a peace rally with 30,000 other people. I have been looking at the photos lately---partly because I needed Kurdish costume examples for a project at work---but revisiting those photos have made me think a lot. In the majority of those pictures you can see signs that say "Peace is Patrotic". I made those. I made a lot of them. And I still believe that you can be fiercely patrotic and want peace. I am very grateful that I can write and talk about my government, and say whatever I want, knowing that I have that right. I didn't always appreicate it, it took a couple of trips to Turkey to truly appreicate it.
I've been reading a book about being in balance. I really love this book. It has a bunch of quotes that I have been writing down in my quote journal. I think part of my reason for loving this book, is that it is reminding me of where I used to be mentally and physically....and being reminded of it...was exactly what I needed. There was a quote in it about war, and taking into yesterday's conversation and my comments on this post...I want to share it with you.
"Why of course, the people don't want war...But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship....voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in every country."
You will never guess who said that....Hermann Goering, Hitler's right hand man. When I read it, it gave me chills. I am not using this quote to be against the government.
I am very patriotic, but I don't like being manipulated.
We are manipulated all the time and by all administrations. Think of it. 30 years ago we loved the Iranians, 20 years ago and through today we are told to hate them. 20 years ago we loved the Iraqis, 15 years ago we were told to hate them, now we are told to love them again. This cycle continues back to before we were a country...we hated the French and then loved them. We loved the British, then hated them, and now we love them again. Look at the Russians...we used to hate them, but we like them now again.
It feels like the country is in elementary school.
If an average adult acted like this in their everyday life...at work they would forced to see a job coach, or they would be forced to go into therapy to "understand their issues". In my opinion the whole freaking government needs to go to therapy. We expect all Americans to focus on learning and understanding the individual, but the government isn't. The individual is expected to shy away from conflict and to feel shamed by society when they embrace conflict...but that doesn't hold true for the government.
Again...another thing that is truly messed up.