Sunday, April 04, 2010

Letters to the Editor

I had a letter to the editor in the Herald Leader a few weeks ago supporting health care reform. I sent this one in Friday night, in response to a letter writer justifying the Iraq war and naysaying the health care reform (which has passed!) with, "In the Bible, the story of the Good Samaritan is a classic example of non-governmental intrusion.". My response:
I would like to discuss a couple of the issues raised by Mr. J. D. Mackey in his letter of 4/2/10.

Firstly, with regard to the Iraq war, my recollection is that, although he was very belligerent and obstructionist, Sadam Hussein did finally agree to let the UN inspectors into Iraq. But, that wasn't enough for us, we decided to invade. I don't think we will ever really know why. My worst fear is that, we were too successful in Afghanistan in 2002, and Mr. Cheney and his friends at Haliburton and Blackwater had not obtained enough data on the possible profit margins of outsourcing war, and just wanted some more data.

Regardless, we invaded, and the blood of the 100,000 Iraqi civilians who died is on all of our hands. This is several dozen times the number of innocent deaths of 9/11. And, no Weapons of Mass Destruction or facilities to produce WMDs were found, and everyone agrees, Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11.

That blood is on my hands, and on all of our hands.

Secondly, with regard to the bible, I would direct Mr. Mackey to Acts 2:44-45 and 4:34-35.

"2:44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need."

"4:34 There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need."

A bit stronger than the trickle down economics of the good samaritan, yes?

Actually, it reminds me of "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need" -- Karl Marx, 1875. It's a good thing that The United States is NOT a christian country -- if it were, we'd have to change the system of government from democracy to communism!

I've been answering every teabagger post I see on Facebook, and any place where I normally comment. I try to be rational, stick to just the facts. But, it's so hard. Like the letter above, reading the verses, a christian might say "Maybe there's something to think about here". But, quoting Marx and comparing christianity to communism, although accurate, is basically a cheap shot, a finger in the eye (Stoogism rules!) -- your average christian is going to take offense. Maybe I just need to do this more often to where I can stay on point more easily.

Speaking of fingers in the eye, this NSFW Bill Maher clip also explores physical metaphors for how to deal with republicans.

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