Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Mr. Bush is Not My President

I am not sure with what regularity I will be posting. I have been making some profound changes in my life and I have been very busy. In the course of the changes in my life I found some parallel to the disaster wrought in New Orleans and throughout the Gulf States.

I have been, for many years, a Christian. I have been in the midst of a nearly fifteen year crisis of faith. Any who have read some of my very first posts to this blog know part of the reason why. The rest of the reason has been, quite simply, that many who would call themselves Christian regularly engage in activities that caused me to be embarrassed to admit that I am a Christian. I have recently been attending a great church and have renewed my relationship with God.

It fills me with great sorrow that on the eve of my personal renewal of that relationship, I find myself at the loss of another. Mr. Olbermann of CNN put it in words that made me weep, not for the dead, dying and displaced (I have wept for them as well) but for the other victims of Katrina, or more accurately it's aftermath - Americans like Mr. Olbermann and myself. I weep because the President of this nation - is not my president. I weep for what that means. Right now I feel dissasociated from my country in a way I never came close to before. I felt closer to my country at the heights of my drug use and quest to be on the fringe of society. I felt closer sleeping under an overpass in the rain one night while the water that drained onto the ledge I was on soaked me and flowed around me. I felt closer when I was so far into a five week acid binge that I had forgotten my own name.

In my short lifetime this country has never elected a president I would have voted for. I actually still carry some fondness for Reagan the man - not the president - the man. But never have I seen a president I wanted as president. Yet never until now have I ever even thought, "this is not my president." To be sure, none of those presidents had to deal with a major city being destroyed, but I'd like to think that Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush Sr. or Clinton would have, at the very least, been on hand to lead.

Instead we have Mr. Bush who leads us not to safety but to fear. He has proven to this nation and to it's enemies - we are vulnerable - we are without security - we have no leader. Throughout every debacle created by Mr. Bush's regime I have referred to his every error as our error - every travesty committed has been our travesty. But this, this is beyond pale. We do not live in America. Oh sure, geography and semantics say we do, but America does not exist - maybe it never did - nut for the first time in my life I truly fear. I didn't know this fear 10 days ago. We have truly and completely been abandoned by our government. Mr. Bush would like us to believe our government is huge, truly massive - it is not - it has in fact "drowned in a bathtub."

I weep tonight. First for those effected directly, physically by the hurricane. I weep also for the other victims - each of us who used to be Americans - but now have joined the ranks of developing nations. I weep the hardest for my child, for your children who inherit this salted earth.

DuWayne E. Brayton


Lizzy said...

Well, sir, you are not weeping alone. The tides are turning, although not without causing so much death.


Beth said...

Yes, Lizzy, I do hope the tides are turning in this country, where people realize that the federal government cannot and constitutionally should not be responsible for every aspect of our lives.

Beth said...

To DuWayne who said, "We have truly and completely been abandoned by our government" I say the heart and soul of this country does not reside in the government but with the great people who make up America. Just like putting your faith in church took you away from God, do not let the government take you away from being a proud American. It is the people that are the salt of this earth.

Erik said...

DuWayne -

What you're seeing, I think, is the result of 1 part incompetence with 1 part ideology. A different government, and I'm sure we'd find other things that aren't right. This too will pass.

(carrying on from elsewhere to) Beth -

Are you really suggesting that the federal government ought not be responsible for coordinating a response to disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, terrorist attacks?

Beth -

I notice you think of government as different than the people. Am I right? Maybe you could talk about that in relation to Katrina?

Beth said...

"Are you really suggesting that the federal government ought not be responsible for coordinating a response to disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, terrorist attacks?"

No, I am thinking proactively, what should have happened before the storm even hit.

Beth said...

"I notice you think of government as different than the people. Am I right? Maybe you could talk about that in relation to Katrina?"

Of course the government is made up of people, and people make mistakes. The bigger the government I think the bigger the mistakes can get.

I didn't like seeing DuWayne get down about America. There are many good people here. Don't miss the forest for the trees.

DuWayne Brayton said...

Then the Federal government ought to take considerably less of my income. They assume a lot of responsability, then they take our money - waste it, tell us they will protect us, then leave us to die.

Beth said...

Glory hallelujah, DuWayne, and welcome to the ideals of the conservative values! Less taxes - YES!

DuWayne Brayton said...

Sorry, I responded to less taxes in the wrong post.

I want the services that the feds have commited to. We have already paid for it, they have committed it and they have failed. They failed to coordinate rescue efforts entirely. When Blanco declared a state of emergency FEMA had a responsability to take over all efforts. That is their job. Instead all they did was tell people offering aid to wait - while people starved and died of dehydration and violence.

andi said...

Hey D. Thanks for the link to your blog. Hope you update as often as you can.

One of my friends said the other day (after my hour-long rant-o-rama about the debacle of katrina) that it seems like Americans are rediscovering their humanity because of this disaster.

i pray that we don't lose it again. and i really do hope that we can maintain our sense of active compassion for each other even when there isn't a visible disaster or crisis in the works. (there's always something, after all, even if we can't see it happening.)

your friend beth has ideas about government that appear to be very similar to my husband's.