Saturday, March 24, 2007

Window not only thing Broken

While I was in DC lobbying Congress and particiapting in demonstrations, friends in Milwaukee were marching too. Apparently some anarchists in the group broke a window to a Military Recruiting Station which really got attention. The local FOX6Blog was ablaze with right-wing questions and comments, this was mine.

Q: Do you think this is a fair way to protest the war? Or does this go beyond the scope of peaceful protests -- since there was property damage involved?

Is violating personal property a bad thing? I think everyone can agree it is, including cvac (a friend of the anarchists who bravely posted a comment on the blog- before being harrassed off the site). Does this go beyond the scope of peaceful protests? Obviously by the very name it does. But, is this a fair way to protest a war? Well here the big assumption is was this a fair war?

This is the real question as it holds the underpinnings to justify the actions of cvac's friends (right or wrong) and the intentions of the peacekeepers and even the basis for the righteous patriotic saber rattling posed by many of our bloggers.

By all accounts the war was unjust, as every day more information is brought into question by our 110th Congress. Justifications based on misinformation (lies), scrupulous partisan appointments and unethical removal of anyone against the leadership's agenda, rampant corruption and enrichment of corporate alliances through contracts and policy, all the way to improper legal actions by top officials, its becoming hard to remain a loyal Bush supporter, and harder to not deny this war has brought about near annihilation to the civilization in Iraq. So I guess its safe to say its not a fair war.

But what is also not fair or balanced, is our media's role in handling the information of our times. Not merely what it does or doesn't not show of the real images of war, but what it chooses to show instead. While we sit at home watching basketball and idol shows, our nation is acting like an imperial power, bringing sovereign nations to their knees and remaking them to suit "our" pleasure.

Media is giving us an "embedded" view that undergoes censorship from many levels. So rather than speaking truth to its people, our media provides a great distortion. But beyond that it also projects distraction and sense of comfort. It creates a shield to protect us from sinking to the carnal-levels of violence we subject our troops, prisoners and innocent iraqi/afghanni citizens to endure. By failing to tell the uncensored truth, it fails to inform us back home, of the full issues. Who is being killed, how many, how brutally and to what psychologically damning ends for our soldiers who have to carry out these policies?

Instead it shows TV dramas with torture and terrorism as themes. These shows wrap up neatly in an hour, or a season, but they make a spectacle the horrors and thereby desensitize us to the reality going on around us today. Our fears are cultivated to bring out responses and tolerances that we would not otherwise exhibit. Here in this Fox6Blog, we regularly see cries for capital punishment, eye for an eye, don't like it—move, or simply rash actions for dealing with complex problems. We've become a society who wants the answers to fit neatly in a time-slot between American Idol and Bones.

Cvec and her friends that call themselves anarchists are responding to a society that is increasingly losing touch with reality. Breaking the window may have been the best thing they could have done... it hurt no-one, but surely got attention.

So now what?

Do we continue to sit, wrapped in our flags of patriotism, holding our crosses or morality while we keep righteously typing our tuff decrees, eating junk food and drinking sodas, til Idol comes on when we plop down on the couch for the rest of the night? Or do we take this moment to move past the anger about a broken window... and perhaps begin to examine the broken part of our own lives?

From the fractured view given us by the media, we seldom see the true faces of the victims to our hostility... be they here, like the increasing numbers of people facing financial turmoil responding in desperation, or in Iraq, Palestine or Afghanistan. Last month, 6000 people died in a region no larger than Wisconsin. Women, children, young and old blown up, tortured, shot, or worse killed for a lack of access to things that were once available to them- even under the brutal former dictatorship. Our soldiers are overwhelmingly against occupation, many more have deserted than the leaders claim. Those that get home face atrocities like Walter Reed or worse, a system that spends all its efforts trying to justify excluding soldiers from the benefits they promised them in recruiting centers like the one in question. Of those Iraqi's left to poll, 90% are against US occupation; Our reconstruction efforts were a hoax to build bases and prisons, and our worst intentions have finally come to realization as we have rewritten Iraq's laws to require foreign Oil company oversight, the agribusiness to require foreign seed and fertilizer, even their business platform is to be built by foreign companies.

We have made a 21th century banana republic of the oldest civilization on earth. Extracting oil and money from the hands of those we came to "liberate". It is plain to see by those not looking at US media, our allies are disappearing as fast as our good will abroad. But at home, life remains peaceful, but for those pesky protesters. Why are a growing number of people angry?

Until we begin to behave like the citizens we are; Until we begin to hold our leadership and our media to a higher degree of accountability; Until we begin to hold our own actions of over-consumption and waste in-check; more windows will break, more burglaries will occur and more people will fear the urban visits.

This will not go away if we watch more tv. It will require sacrifice and compassion... things many hear about during their weekly church services, but fail to put to practice. If we were to behave more like the Christ and less like the Christians, we might begin to see that violence does not solve problems as well as love does.

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