Friday, September 02, 2005

Let's Call It Genocide



In the wake of Katrina, I am watching another American genocide.

What else can you call it?

Scientists have warned of impending disaster, yet the government only saw fit to cut vital funds that could have reinforced the levees; all monies go to fund military adventuring and corporate gain.

What else can you call it?

A mandatory order to evacuate comes without any support to do so. This isn’t such a problem for many folks—if they need to get out they can get in their cars / SUVs or get a ticket out on a plane and split. But what if you don’t have a car, or an SUV—let alone a plane ticket? What if even if you did have a car, where do you go when you have no money to actually stay anywhere once you get away? In this scenario, who’s left?

What else can you call it?

No massive coordinated relief effort from the government for days and days—no food, no water, no sanitation, no way out. I don’t know about you, but I get the feeling that the Federal and State Governments are thinking that these folks are expendable. There are more than 15,000 people left in New Orleans alone, without food or water for Christ’s sake—not to mention the thousands of people left in small towns and rural areas in Mississippi and Louisiana. And without potable water and food they will die. And the governor of Louisiana & president of the u.s., agree that there should be “zero tolerance” for looters. There are orders to shoot to kill folks "looting". What's the difference between looting and taking what is necessary to survive? So, just try and steal some water, soda, chips, anything you can get your hands on because your family has had nothing to eat or drink for 5 days and has been living on a rooftop, or bridge span in 90-degree heat and they are dying--those government forces dispatched aren't there to help you, they are there to shoot to kill, protecting the property of stores (who are insured, after all). It is the american way.

I am outraged.

I feel powerless to give real and tangible aid where it is needed most – 2,700 miles away.

I feel that the most I have been able to do is shake my tiny fists and emote— swell, that will help.

I am not a new critic of this political system, and the resulting administrations. And yet, in the past couple of days, I feel like all of the criticisms that I have spouted for many years about the government not being concerned with the welfare of the common people has been underscored, bolded and italicized in a most macabre way. I think that sometimes, I would rather be wrong.

The negligent disregard for human life that has been shown by those in power is nothing less than criminal—indeed, it is genocidal.

So I shake my tiny fists, I pace agitatedly around the building, I cry, I rant and I rage

And then I recommit myself to the struggle to challenge white privilege, to end classism, racism and sexism.

And I scream as loud as I can “NOT IN MY NAME!!!” It is not my will that my taxes are drained into the ever quickening quagmire of Iraq, leaving the u.s. strapped for relief and rescue resources. The u.s. spends over $5,500,000,000 (yes that’s $5.5 Billion) each month in Iraq—where it comes down as bombs and bullets, bringing death to folks that I have never met and hold no quarrel with. It is this same u.s. that allows (forces?) nearly 1/3 of the population of New Orleans and Biloxi, Mississippi to live in poverty, because a handout to Halliburton is good for the country’s economy, but a handout to desperately poor people somehow or another is thought to erode character.

Is any of this making sense?

What do you call this if you don’t call it negligent homicide of thousands?

What do you call this if you don’t call it genocide?

7 comments:

Eugene said...

article 2c, UN convention, genocide: imposing conditions upon life to bring about the destruction of a people in whole or in part.

Intent, the blatant racism and classism apparent in the societal norm. Add in Barbara Bush's comments and...BINGO!

FastCompany said...

(sad sigh) It is very tragic indeed, dearest friend.

Poverty is something I recognize will always be around in one form or another, but what's inexcusable is how 4.5 more million Americans have been put under the poverty line since Bush took office, how homelessness and the basic qualities of life are universal issues that have bene put on the backburner for decades now, and in result the American family system is weakening and that, as a new United Nations report reveals, parts of America look strikingly like the Third World.

I absolutely approve of the $200 billion aid proposal IF it'll be directed toward not just aiding the victims of the region, but working toward strengthening the region's infrastructure and each American family there in general. What I absolutely don't agree with is how Bush intends to afford this.

Look, I'm sure April 20th is the least likeliest day of the year you'll see the sun shining. But if we just leave the options of taxes off the table, our children will eventually have to make up for what this generation won't pay, where a heavy burden will be lifted on their shoulders. I for one believe that the infamous "death tax" is the one that must be rid of.

Over half of this nation's annual budget goes toward funding the Pentagon. Since 1948, our government has spent $15 trillion to build up this nation's military, worth more than the cumulative monetary value of ALL human-made wealth here at home (schools, hospitals, houses, water systems, etc.). In result, schools are run-down, our roads are crumbling, health care is unreachable to many, and our minimum wage is approximately worth $3.50 less than it was in 1968.

I believe the remedy to both the deficit and the issue of poverty in America is obvious, yet unthinkable to many in our government; we MUST trim the Pentagon and re-direct the funds toward the basic qualities of life here at home.

Isn't it embarrassing that the U.S has the highes infant mortality rate in the developed world? Isn't it embarrassing that we're the only industralized nation in the world NOT to have universal health care? Isn't it embarrassing how every 50 minutes a child dies because of malnutrition or poverty?

I believe in strengthening the American family, you are strengthening this great nation, and when we do just that, we're destined to take America into a whole new golden age.

I believe, if anything, it is the government who truly does NOT support our young men and women in uniform, putting them into unjust wars that have only drained and weakened our army which is designed to protect OUR great nation.

Being the optimist I am, I remain most hopeful that soon there will come a moment when the obvious is made luminary. There used to be a time when there was no "Vietnam syndrome", which is alive and kicking again, and I believe deep in everyone's heart, there's a place that feels and knows something is wrong and they can summon the will to do what's right. The syndrome will catch on I believe, and more will finally fathom that war just makes things worse, not just for other cultures worldwide, but ourselves, and doesn't solve anything.

I'm also hopeful in that, even for just a few days, reporters on the news networks were acting independent and were serious in bringing up these issues of poverty in our society. I feel though our government may definitely try downplaying it, many Americans truly FEEL the issue, and will make an effort to bring the issue to a national stage.

Bless you, dearest Ani! :) I love your blog, yay! (does happy dance) I started one myself here if you'd like to visit! :)

http://www.emmanuelendorphinlovesyouall.blogspot.com/

:) Yay, keep writing, my friend!

Peace, Love and Endorphins,
Noah Eaton
(Mistletoe Angel)
(Emmanuel Endorphin)

FastCompany said...

(giggles) Oops, I don't think my link came across completely! :) Let me try it again!

http://www.emmanuelendorphin
lovesyouall.blogspot.com/

:) Yay!

Peace, Love and Endorphins,
Noah Eaton
(Mistletoe Angel)
(Emmanuel Endorphin)

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