I can understand the confusion, Indiana starts with an I. Iraq, Iran, Indiana. Common mistake. But when my morning paper announced that the Department of Defense was considering testing a humongous pretend nuclear bomb in the Hoosier state, I was terrified. This of course is a very patriotic response. George Bush has spent his entire presidency doing everything in his power to convince us to be terrified, it’s the new American way of life.
In Kentucky, where I happen to live, we don’t generally care much for Hoosiers, although the few that I’ve met seem nice enough. But when we don’t see eye to eye, we settle things on basketball courts, not with neutered nucular weaponry. And like I said, I’m as patriotic as the next person, more than willing to travel in a dehydrated state and take off my shoes at security (although I feel that I should mention that when my teenage son takes his off, the odor can be lethal). But as it turns out, while TSA is busy sniffing peoples shoes, the FAA was staffing a control tower with one guy who was operating on 2 hours of sleep and 49 people died right here in Kentucky. Not Iraq, not Lebanon. In Kentucky. But I digress.
While there are some folks in this country that still seem to think bombing Afghanistan and Iraq was a good idea, I don’t think a one of us can follow the logic of bombing ourselves. In what way could that possibly be making us safer?? Indiana Congressional candidate Barry Welsh put it this way, “I believe in a strong Homeland Security and, if we have to defend our state of Indiana from our national Department of Defense, so be it.”
And that, fellow citizens, is what we need to do. Not just in Indiana either. We live in a country where entire cities are left to wash away into the rising oceans because we don’t officially believe in global warming. Where roads are falling apart. Our waterways are polluted and our air is unbreathable (although I’ll be damned if I know what the alternative is). One in eight of us lives in poverty and you can’t afford health care unless you are the CEO of a pharmaceutical company.
But according to the government, none of these little matters meet the federal guidelines for what is deemed to be terrifying. If you turn on the news, you are constantly told that we are fighting a war on terror. A war that mysteriously started just a few short months after Bush took office. A continuing war that has been justified with a long string of lies and misinformation fed to us 24/7 by the media. And meanwhile our government just shrugs its shoulders about the really terrifying things like rising temperatures and poverty and pollution.
We have no business bombing Indiana, Iran or any other country or state that starts with the letter I or any of the other letters of the alphabet for that matter. Anyone remember when the nutcase that is now running Iran was elected and everyone shook their heads and wondered how that happened. I’m not saying that we would ever interfere with the democratic process in another country, or even in our own country, but it does seem mightily convenient.
It’s time to pull the plug on this charade. The clowns who are running this country have got to go, shouldn’t have been there in the first place (IMPORTANT NOTE TO THE NSA: I’m a pacifist, this is not a veiled threat of violence, so go back to your cubicles and chill). This is a call to deliver a massive pink slip and unemploy the powers that be. It’s time we reclaim our democracy.
Footnote: As I write this, word has come from Hoosiers Against Divine Strake that the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (I’m not making this up) has confirmed that the Divine Strake bomb test (yes that really is what it is called) will not be conducted in Indiana. But they are still planning to conduct the test. Somewhere. Maybe in your state.
LUCINDA MARSHALL is a feminist artist, writer and activist. She is the Founder of the Feminist Peace Network, www.feministpeacenetwork.org.