Give me liberty, or give me death

Sixty years ago, it was a Democratic President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, who presided over the forced internment of American citizens whose only crime was Japanese ancestry.

Make no mistake, FDR is and should be a hero for all progressives in this country. He was a great man, weakened by physical ills, who overcame the defects in his body to do great things, and the strength of his belief in the greatness of democracy inspired a nation to defeat the greatest evil this nation had ever, to that point, seen.

But FDR made mistakes. He wasn’t perfect, as none of us are. Many people like to speak of studying history so as to avoid the mistakes of previous generations. The internment of Japanese-Americans was wrong, and against the principles of a nation which values freedom and self determination over all else.

So while many of us have learned from the mistakes of the past, USA Today writes that an astonishing “half of all Americans believe the U.S. government should restrict the civil liberties of Muslim-Americans according to a nationwide poll“.

I’d say, “How much would you like to bet a majority of those opposed to these restrictions voted for John Kerry, David Cobb, Michael Badnarik, or Ralph Nader?” but the article continues by saying that “[t]he survey conducted by Cornell University also found that Republicans and people who described themselves as highly religious were more apt to support curtailing Muslims’ civil liberties than Democrats or people who are less religious.”

What a surprise. Freedom loving folk oppose measures to restrict people’s freedoms. Huh. I’d’ve never guessed.

Researchers also found that respondents who paid more attention to television news were more likely to fear terrorist attacks and support limiting the rights of Muslim-Americans.

“It’s sad news. It’s disturbing news. But it’s not unpredictable,” said Mahdi Bray, executive director of the Muslim American Society. “The nation is at war, even if it’s not a traditional war. We just have to remain vigilant and continue to interface.”

The survey found 44% favored at least some restrictions on the civil liberties of Muslim Americans. Forty-eight percent said liberties should not be restricted in any way

Freedom isn’t free, the right likes to quote with a smile. And yet they’re willing to just hand it over in the name of being “safe” and “secure.”

Whatever happened to the attitude in this country, that great revolution demanding freedom without condition, what -IN THE NAME OF GEORGE WASHINGTON’S ASSHOLE – what fucking happened to Patrick Henry standing tall and proud and in the name of freedom declaring, “Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!

Apparently, some of us would rather go to Walmart.

0 thoughts on “Give me liberty, or give me death

  1. Hey! I just did an Honors project on the Japanese internment. Check it:

    http://www.rachelrichardson.org/yearsofinfamy/

    Also, I’ve been doing a critical analysis at the role he played behind the Pearl Harbor attack. It’s truly fascinating to see how he deliberately antagonized the Japanese to committ an overt act of war so as to enter the European theatre.

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