BENEATH THE SPIN • ERIC L. WATTREE
Look at what Obama said about Bush and Cheney’s war crimes – “We want to look forward, not back.” What the hell is he talking about? Bush killed close to a million people for nothing more than corporate greed. How can we expect to dismiss the killing of a million men, women, and children by simply saying, let’s let bygones be bygones? One can only wonder if Obama would have taken that position if his family had been among that million? Somehow, I doubt it.
It was that one remark that opened my eyes regarding our president. While I consider Obama the best that we’ve got, I also recognize that he’s far from an angel. The remark served to remind me that Obama is also the product of a propaganda machine – his own. So while I continue to support Obama, I never allow myself to forget that even though he’s an impressive man, he’s also a politician, not the Messiah.
Americans need to recognize that life is not a football game. It’s not good enough to just pull for our side, regardless to whether we’re talking about the nation, political parties, or individual politicians. We should always pull for justice, period – regardless to whose political ox it gores. Because if we continue to allow the various propaganda machines to cloud our minds to the truth, none of us will be safe. It’s Muslims who are being demonized today, but tomorrow it may be Blacks, Hispanics, Jews, activists, the entire middle class, or whatever group is convenient to meet our rulers’ needs. And yes, I said rulers, because those who control our minds, control our destiny.
But the propaganda machine is an insidious device, because it tells us what we want to hear, and helps us hide what we don’t want to see, so it has the seductive properties of a drug. Take the issue of terrorism for example. Terrorism is defined as the killing of innocent noncombatants for political gain. Keeping that definition in mind, we must not forget that we are the ONLY country on Earth who has ever dropped an atomic bomb on not one, but two cities, killing and maiming hundreds of thousands of innocent men, women, and children. As horrible as 9/11 was, the horror of that atrocity makes 9/11 look insignificant.
But accepting the fact that we committed such a horrible atrocity is inconsistent with the image that we so passionately embrace of “that shining light on the hill,” so our propaganda machine swung into action. It helped us to justify that action by convincing us that we only did it to save the lives of thousands of American troops. But there’s a very serious flaw in that argument. By embracng that argument it affirms that we accept the fact that there are times when terrorism is justified. Thus, by our own definition the United States is, in fact, a terrorist state. So the fact is, the only difference between Muslim terrorists and American, or “Christian,” terrorists is that we have a much more efficient delivery system.
Now, before someone gets upset and start shouting that I’m un-American, please remember that truth and justice is the American way – and what I’ve just told you is both true and just. What I’ve said is not simply my opinion. Every word I’ve written is verifiable, and based on pure logic – and like mathematics, logic doesn’t lie.
Eric L. Wattree
Religious bigotry: It’s not that I hate everyone who doesn’t look, think, and act like me – it’s just that God does.
Eric L. Wattree is a writer, poet, and musician, born in Los Angeles. He’s a columnist for The Los Angeles Sentinel, The Black Star News in New York, and a Staff writer for Veterans Today. He’s also the author of A Message From the Hood.