Thursday, March 23, 2006

Letter to the Editor - Southern Style

"Patriotic opposition"
To the editor:

When someone speaks their dislike for George W. Bush, the disagreeing audience immediately focuses on the soldiers in Iraq, saying you are unpatriotic and hurting the soldiers. These are just false deductions.

Mr. Underwood even accuses Mr. Osborne (in letters to the editor) of hating this country because he speaks out against Bush. These are the same arguments conservatives used against James Otis, the first American to speak out against the king of England. James Otis coined the phrase, 'A man's house is his castle.' He was arguing that the colonies should be free of British troops' intrusion into their homes. Otis would be horrified at how our government is now intruding into our homes.

Just because I hate what Bush is doing to my country does not mean I hate my country or I am unpatriotic. Just the opposite; it means I am paying attention to what is happening to my country and that I care.

Frederick Douglass summed it up when he said, ' Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation, are men who want rain without the thunder and lighting. They want the ocean without the roar of its many waters.'

When we can no longer speak out, then we are no longer free; and just because a person may not like Bush, the conclusion is not that he does not like this country or that he does not support troops in whatever it is they are ordered by the president to do. I don't think one soldier was wrong in going to Iraq, I think Bush was wrong in ordering them to go there.

I also believe it is my duty to point out mistakes by my government. Had Otis, Samuel Adams and the other American patriots not spoken out against an oppressive government, where would we be today? Actually, it is not the person who speaks out when they believe the government is wrong who is unpatriotic, it is the person who says nothing and permits his freedoms to be taken away.

Peggy *****


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