‘Freedom’s just another word’

The events of three years ago were a terrible shock. Terrorists do want to attack us, and they do need to be fought. But the artificial hysteria I found when I was back in America over the last month contributes nothing positive in a battle that has to be waged in a real world full of gray areas and seeming contradictions. The fact is, allies do not cooperate just because you tell them to. Dictators do not pose a clear and present danger just because you think they might. People do not feel liberated just because you say they are. They won’t love you for intentions. They will judge you by your actions.

When Newsweek runs a story with the opening sentences of ‘I can tell you the week the United States lost the war in Iraq. It was 18 months ago,’ I think that one can hopefully judge that mainstream media are beginning to report things somewhat reasonably. Of course, this is just print media. This implies that people might actually be reading. The more important thing is what are the talking heads on TV saying. That I can’t speak for. It continues to boggle my mind that people would even consider to vote for Bush. I can’t think of one thing that he’s attempted to do in the past four years that had an even remotely good result.

But then I went to watch his most recent political ad. It scared me enough to want to vote for him. Against images of happy Americans being happy and American, the narrator says ‘History’s lesson: strength builds peace. Weakness invites those who would do us harm. Unfortunately, after the first World Trade Centre attack, John Kerry and Congressional Liberals tried to slash six billion dollars from intelligence budgets, and tried to cut or eliminate over forty weapons now fighting the war on terror, and refused to support our troops in combat with the latest weapons and body armour.’ Then, the tag line comes up on the screen: John Kerry & Congressional Liberals. Putting our protection at risk.’

After I got over my momentary fright, I realised, ‘Wait a minute…. They said the FIRST WTC attack. That was in ’93!’ But how many people do you think are going to make that connection? They hear ‘world trade centre’ and ‘attack’ and automatically think 2001. Then they think, ‘Kerry did all this after September 11th? There’s no way we can support him! If we support Kerry, we might die!’

I’m going to Carlos’s to watch the debate tonight. I’m afraid. Very afraid. I may cry.

In other news, Bush also has this new Spanish ad called ‘Mi familia’ which is basically this kind of catchy 30-second song about how great it is to be hispanic and american and republican, I think. I need to get Carlos’s to translate it for me.

‘Soy George W Bush y apruebo este mensaje.’

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