I don’t necessarily agree with the shouting that has been going on at town hall meetings lately. It seems it didn’t get physical until the unions moved in on behalf of the democrats, but I’m not sure. I’m also unsure about the name calling. Oh, I understand slang and slurs in the middle of a heated argument. I just don’t understand why, in the quiet of an office with nothing louder than fingers on a keyboard, leaders would purposefully call dissidents “un-American!” Have Pelosi or Hoyer read the 1st Amendment? Are they students of American History?
It is very clear that they do not want these dissenting voices, which would never have been raised had their questions been answered! The Democrats and liberals were wise to encourage the “mob” atmospheres, since that took the attention away from the ignorant politicians. I don’t mean “stupid.” Stupidity can’t be helped. Ignorance can be. These folks don’t know how to answer the “mob” because they hadn’t educated themselves by READING the bills! Today the crowds were ready. They had read the bill. They did their homework.
Tonight, I know that I am proud to be one of these “un-Americans.” I’m in great company. Radio talk show hosts, right-wing newspersons, average citizens at the microphone and the thousands of bloggers and tweeters are doing the most American thing that we can do!
It was dissenting voices that rang out as tea was dumped into the Boston Harbor. It was dissenting voices that articulated distrust, dislike and disloyalty to King George. Land-owners, farmers, scholars, businessmen, doctors, lawyers, merchants, shippers, naturalists, scientists and laborers joined forces and voices to give birth to the greatest nation on earth.
These were not ignorant people. They studied the classics and read the work of others on liberty and democracy. They made hard but wise decisions based on the wisdom of others and their desires for freedom. They took their time to get it right. They didn’t hurry to force this republic on America. They didn’t hide what they were doing. They communicated their ideas and desires, and supported public discourse. They not only supported it, they demanded it for us forever by protecting it as a guaranteed right in the 1st Amendment.
Throughout our history, this right to dissent has brought about social justice and preserved our government. Women banded together to shout, wave signs and parade in the streets until they finally won the right to vote. Black and white patriots ran the Underground Railroad and suffered through segregation and lynchings to insure equal rights for all and end the reign of Jim Crow. A war that our government would not or could not win was ended as young people banned together with peace signs and shouts of outrage. Agent Orange and DDT were banned and the nation has increasingly become greener and greener without a Green Czar or an Energy Czar, but because of the voices crying out in unison in the absence of song birds.
We not only have the right, but we have the obligation to resist unjust and unwise legislation. We must speak out against unbridled spending and disastrous fiscal policies. We should be brave and bold and united against anything that smacks of socialism. Unlike health care, the freedom to speak our minds IS a Constitutional Right.
Hear Nancy Pelosi for yourself!