Monday, August 29, 2005

Go Cindy

Let me belatedly put in my two cents for Cindy Sheehan, the woman who is protesting outside President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas. She lost her son, and is calling for the troops to be brought home. She has attracted the support of sympathetic celebrities, and the ire of the right, to the point of being on the receiving end of a nasty vilification campaign by right-wing talk show hosts.

I believe that Cindy Sheehan represents a beacon of hope for those who want peace. She is not a "lefty" in the traditional sense of the word. Her son died in Iraq, but she is basically saying that he didn't die for a cause. She died for nothing. That is quite something for a grieving mother to admit (despite its truth).

Because of this, she has credibility that "liberal" TV mouthpieces don't have.

Now, she and her entourage are apparently heading out on a three-week cross-country tour. I wish them the best, and hope they make the most of the opportunity. And, I hope that folks will at least respect her and listen to her.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Dick Cheny coming to visit

According to the Georgia Straight, apparently Michael Walker of the far right-wing Fraser Institute has invited US Vic-President (some would say president) Dick Cheney.

Long time fishing buddies, Walker and Cheney will meet in Alberta, likely for a fhsing and hunting trip.

Apparently Cheny will also be giving a taalk. and taking a look at tarsands near Fort McMurray

Gail Davidson of Lawyers Against the War has said that many in the peace movement oppose Cheney's visit.

I am willing to bet that protestors will not be silent during his visit, nor should they be.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Dear readers

I'd like to explain why I haven't been posting that much in recent months. Maybe it's something that y'all can help me with.

I look at the world around me, and I see all the shit going on in so many aspects of the world. I have a sense of futility. I hate to say it, but that's where I'm at.

Someone has kidnapped the Stephen Karr who is passionate, idealistic, and optimistic about the future and his ability to make a significant difference, and replaced him with me.

Sure, I check out news sources, thought not as many as I used to. I consider posting something to my blog, and then I think to myself, what's the point? This won't do anything. The power's that be are way to powerful for 18 million people on the streets on February 15, 2003 to budge, let along little old me.

The irony of it is, making a difference is why I decided to start blogging in the first place. I think a lot about the purpose of my life, generally speaking, and consider one of my main purposes to be making a difference. How can someone see all this shit and not act? I shouldn't be posting about new grey hairs, but about the Downing Street Memo, and Karl Rove, Guantanamo Bay, the rise of fascism and the threats against civil liberties in the West. Actually no, I take that back. I created Ramblings so I could have a space to talk about whatever's going on in my life, personal or political. I'm glad I have that space for whenever I use it for personal stuff, but I've discovered that talking to the world about my personal life is just not something I'm very good at nor particularly comfortable with.

The short of it is: I know there is a shitload of work to do to clean up the mess that politicians have created, but I just need to be motivated to be more fervant in my actions. I need to believe that this flower will bloom if I water it enough.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

poem for Hiroshima

I wrote this on the spur of the moment. I don't usually publish my poems, but I wanted to make some dedication to this sorry moment in human history.

Nuclear reaction
Searing heat
Blinding light
Hearts and lives torn apart
Black charred bodies laying strewn amidst the rubble.
Two hundred thousand voices screaming in unison
Sometimes silence is the only response
Sometimes silence is the only response
From the ashes
Arises hope
And a wish
For a peaceful tomorrow

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Remembering Hiroshima

It is often said of the Nazi Holocaust, that we must never forget it, to ensure that it never happens again. It does, again and again, but that it beside the point of this post.

We must always remember the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, for several reasons. One, to remember the horrors of nuclear war. Two, to remember the hundreds of thousands of innocent victims. Three, to be ever mindful that the distinction between good and evil is not always as clear as we might like to think.

I watched a BBC documentary on CBC about Hiroshima tonight. It involved re-enactments of events from both a Japanese civilian and US military perspective, and recollections of both. The Japanese stories were truly horrifying: burnt bodies, incinerations, rescues, and radiation poisoning, and one very painful recollection, of a mother who tried in vain to rescue her trapped child from fire before fleeing.

What absolutely astounded me were the Americans who maintained that it had to be done. I have to wonder, what were the soldiers thinking and feeling, as they prepared to wipe out a city? The reasoning given is that it saved lives in the end by shortening the war. Saved more lives than were taken by the bomb? I doubt it. Another interviewed soldier said that the Japanese is responsible for it by not backing down. That's crap. The hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians weren't responsible. Actions of a much smaller scale could have gotten the attention of the Japanese. The applause of soldiers in response Truman's announcement of the successful bomb drop was sickening.

My feeling is that the US wanted to maximize civilian casualties. No warning was given of any kind, be they leaflets dropped, or a lower pass which would trigger an air raid siren in Hiroshima immediately preceding the bomb drop.

The solidiers aboard the Enola Gay, Harry S. Truman, and everyone in between in the chain of command could have and should have been tried for war crimes under the Nuremburg rules.

Check out this story from Common Dreams.
See Wikipedia on Hiroshima/Nagasaki
And this.

This Saturday is the 60th Anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing. There are probably anti-war events in your community observing it. Regardless, I would encourage you this Saturday to take a moment to remember.