This is an Emergency

I think I am having an anaphylactic reaction to George Bush. It seems that when I watch him speak, my immune system releases histamine that causes breathing difficulty. I know you understand. Some of it has to do with Bush’s body language, the posturing that becomes more grotesque as his desperation increases. And the rough, tough, and often mangled delivery of his words. But, then, I’m also having a reaction to Tony Snow, Bush’s sanitation engineer, the man whose tongue moves so fluidly in cleaning up after his boss and in presenting a charming image to the public. It must be the lies, hypocrisy, the death, and the destruction in addition to my inability to comprehend how any compassionate person could support this administration.

As George continues hitting the red areas to lasso his base, he is shouting, “We’re in the midst of a war on terror and one of the most fundamental fights is in Iraq and yet the Democrats have no plan for victory.” This is stunningly stupid for reasons too obvious to write. If you can bear to watch the performance, you notice a worshipping smile on some nodding face very close to the Decider. Is this an actor for hire, paid for by the Republican National Committee, or a genuine Bush believer?

And there’s this: “The only way we can fail is if we leave before the job is done.” Mind-numbingly moronic for reasons that also are too obvious to write.

Meanwhile, we are three days into November and eight U.S. troops have been killed this month, bringing the total to 2,826. One thousand servicemen and women have died since I wrote my first op-ed article after the death of my nephew on August 6, 2005. I vividly remember thinking at the time that my message might have an effect that would help end this war so that no more families would have to hear the words my brother received, “We regret to inform you.” How naïve I was.

We live in a society where someone like Jerry Falwell (speaking yesterday on behalf of Republicans), with influence over millions, sermonizes about the sanctity of life and with hardly a pause, continues by adding that he agrees with George Bush about the war. War is an insult to the sanctity of life. Do these power grabbers ever think about the dead and those left behind who will grieve forever? Do they know that 100 Iraqis have died in three days?

Yes, I am having a reaction to the toxic pollutants that the Bush Administration is emitting with each lie that results in the deaths of American military personnel, other coalition troops, and Iraqis. Anaphylactic shock requires emergency medical treatment. So does our country.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at: Missybeat@aol.com



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Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com

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