January 3, 2007

Wednesday notes

Went to Starbucks again today, you know, to focus on myself. Today I offered my little table to someone who needed the power connection. It was a nice contrast to yesterday's experience.

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Saddam refuses to go quietly, I guess, since the conversation continues. Today on NPR, I heard about Iraqi Sunni traveling to pay their respects at his grave. What an accomplishment. Hitch has some thoughts:
The timing—isn't anyone in the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad paid to notice this kind of thing?—was explicitly designed to rub every kind of humiliation into Iraqi Sunnis. It profaned their observance of the Eid ul-Adha holiday, while gratifying the Shiite fundamentalists whose ceremonies begin one day later. To have made the butcher Saddam into a martyr, to have gratified one sect, and to have cheated millions of Iraqis and Kurds of the chance for a full accounting—what a fine day's work!

Brian McLaren just felt "dirty" when he heard about it. I agree.

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In one of the funniest controversies of the last few months, the first Muslim congressman caused concern among the wackjob right because he wanted to be sworn in on the Koran. Today's news is awash with his brilliant move to be sworn in on a Koran once owned by Thomas Jefferson.

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I have thought that once the Democrats actually took some power that our conservative friends might rediscover their sense of outrage about leadership. You know, decide to actually investigate leaders and then hold them accountable. In ways that they, of course, would not do with George "Jesus" Bush.

Not only is the racism against Obama disheartening, but the attacks on his character are unbelievably hypocritical. Obama made the mistake of admitting some experimentation with drugs in his youth and the right is "shocked, shocked I say." Maybe Obama needs to make a big deal about a conversion or "born again" experience so he can follow W in achieving total amnesty for his youthful indiscretions.

Of course, Rushbo will weigh in with outrage completely forgetting his own addictions. Obama showed growth and honesty--two traits which the fat boy couldn't pick out of a lineup. Bill O'Reilly might sexually harrass co-workers, but ten dollars says he will be all over this. And of course, the religious right will make noises about Obama's immorality with no recognition that their credibility is gone.

1 comment:

SOF said...

I just finished reading McLaren's comments on Saddam Hussein's execution. Thanks for posting the link. The last few paragraphs are poignant (clipped below).

We become desensitized to things we shouldn't, and as that happens, we are in such great danger of becoming worse people than we ever imagined being, ever wanted to be.

So, if you felt as I did after the execution of Saddam Hussein, dirty, I wouldn't dismiss the feeling. I would say that it might be a redemptive dirtiness, and without it, I am afraid of what we could become.


I felt the same way about the news of Saddam's execution that I felt when Timothy McVeigh was executed. Sick to my stomach.

Personally, something about the death penalty doesn't seem right to me from moral grounds. I wrote a paper in high-school (many years ago) which informed my view. To this day I find no moral justification. I do not understand the lawful (state sanctioned) extinguishing of a life even if this person has killed and/or maimed others. Should they be held responsible for their actions? But that goes without saying. Life in prison without parole is not an easy sentence. No freedom, few visitors if any, mediocre food at best, little sunlight, restricted activities, fear of rape or sodomy...

Anyway, I hope I never cheer when I hear someone's life was extinguished.