Monday, January 01, 2007

New Year Reflections

A friend of mine wrote this piece and I wanted to share it with others... Thanks Mary Elizabeth for your thoughtful words of wisdom.
My thoughts may be absurd but my belief is this past week’s events we witnessed between Christmas and New Years represent the theatre of the absurd. As United States’ political leaders spoke celebratory words about Gerald Ford, the 38th president who died on Tuesday, December 26, my feelings flowed from gratefulness to rage. Strong comments rang out about his honesty, humility and fairness when he embraced his presidential duties, the only person never voted into this office.

Simultaneously, many of these same people engineered the noose hanging of Saddam Hussein four days later. This act was enabled by United States leaders who deceitfully invaded Iraq three and a half years ago. Hussein’s death was surrounded by actions emanating from President Bush’s administration. I do not question Hussein’s villainous acts but I do question our leaders who have allowed Iraq to be on the verge of collapsing into a devastating hopeless crater.

The media presented gross pictures of a death we did not need stamped on our minds. Deaths of two very different world leaders happening in the same week are astounding and absurd. One was natural and the other was certain when his statute was destroyed in 2003..

Saturday evening I wept as I watched on television the funeral hearse and caravan of mourners slowly move through Washington to the Capitol for a state funeral to be held for President Ford. I wept for what happened to bring him to the Presidency. I wept for what our country has lost. I wept for the people of deceit who speak lies and for the people of honesty who speak truth. I wept for the people who have governed our country for the good of the people not of their political well being.

I wept for the life of Hussein who became a world villain and for the truth that more people died from our invasion of Iraq than were killed by his tyrannical acts. His death was revenge for his disregard of human life. This act will probably escalate the rage with the deaths of more Iraqis and our military. Increased killing does not assure peace.

Now my eyes are dry but my heart aches as I pray the peoples’ voice will be heard. I pray leaders who care more about the foundation of our country than their political future and how history will depict them will garner the strength to emulate the wisdom and prudence Mr. Ford portrayed for our country in crisis in 1974.

May decency, honesty, integrity, truth and fairness again be the hallmarks of our domestic and foreign policies. It is a tall order; however, I believe we the people have the will and power to support United States’ leaders who value these qualities. May every concerned person become active in restoring these essential values of our democracy throughout 2007.

Mary Elizabeth McIlvane
Writer, Poet

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