Those folks out in Arizona are sure jumpy these days. As we all know, they have made being an illegal immigrant in the state, well, illegal. I read in the paper yesterday that in their infinite wisdom, they have passed a new law aimed at ethnic studies. No longer may ethnic studies be taught in the public schools because such studies apparently cause Latino students to hate white folks.
Well, I don’t know whether such studies do or don’t cause Latinos to hate another ethnic groups, but I agree in part with Arizona. Such studies should be a part of American studies, showing how Latinos contributed and continue to contribute to the building of the nation and especially Arizona. I’m sure none of those who advocate dropping ethnic studies think about the fact that US history and probably the history of Arizona is taught from a European perspective. That is, that ethnic group called “white” need have no fear that studies of their group will be outlawed.
Arizona’s law seems to be just another goof ball aimed at immigrants, illegal or legal. Such laws may make good politics but poor governing. If them folks in Arizona want to secede from the union, let them. But they have to move the state some place outside of the United States, like to Mexico.
The founding Fathers did not intend for citizens to make serving the country as legislators a career. Although some of them were, I suspect, career politicians, the aim was for citizen legislators to run the country and the local governing institutions. To get rid of the career politicians, some citizens in some state and local areas have passed laws limiting the terms of mayors, county commissioners, city council persons, and other elective positions.
The best form of term limitation is for voters to kick the incumbents out. Whenever a politician has served for decades in the US Congress and then during one election, he or she tries to run against those rascals in Washington, it is time to vote that politician out of office.
The same goes for those who change parties to remain in office. When a politician changes parties, you know he or she has no principles. The one thing they value is remaining in office. Politics for them is not just a career, it is a way of life.
So, the insurrection against incumbents of both parties is good for the country, isn’t it?
In recent months, the Iraqis have engaged in the cornerstone of democracy, voting. Yet, they are still struggling to establish a stable, functioning government. The absence of such a government has fueled the bombings and shootings by militants that have left hundreds dead.
Because of the violence, U. S. Commanders have delayed for a month the first wave of troops scheduled to be withdrawn and are thinking of slowing the pace of the withdrawal. Of course, as usual, the US troops are supposed to help fight the violence and stabilize the country.
There is just one thing wrong with this kind of thinking. The Iraqis must provide for their own security. It doesn’t matter when the U. S. Troops leave, if the Iraqis don’t form a functioning government that can protect the citizens, the result will be violence. The country will not be stable until either a strong man arises and puts down all competition, or a strong group arises and puts down all competition.
Think about this: the Shiites are still angry at the Sunnis for what they did to them under Saddam’s rule. What they probably have on their minds is vengeance. And let’s not forget the Kurds who want autonomy for their region.
Unless we are willing to have an open end commitment, we must pull out now.
One of the best weapons against terrorists, homegrown or foreign, is the alertness of us citizens. We have been very lucky so far this year that citizens recognized and took action against two would-be bombers. The latest incident involving a Pakistan-American citizen also showcased the quick action of the New York police and federal authorities, despite some mistakes, in apprehending the suspect after a citizen reported to an officer that he had seen smoking coming from a parked car in Times Square.
What bothers me is why American citizens of Middle Eastern descent attack America. Both the the Army base killer and the car bomber are US citizens. Neither of them seemed to be poor and both apparently had done well as US citizens. Yet, they chose to bite the hand that fed them. I find it hard to believe it was entirely due to Islamic ideology when they could look around them and see that the radical ideology of some islamists is not true about America.
We are not perfect. We are not as some want to claim exceptional. We are still a nation trying to figure out who we are. Some want to go against some of our most cherished values in fighting terrorism. They want to take away the citizenship of anyone who is accused of an act of terrorism even before they have been convicted. Why do they want to do this? To deprive the suspect of the basic American right not to talk to authorities without a lawyer.
And let us not forget the brouhaha over torture.
The threat of terrorism, it seems, has made some us lose our minds.