Monday, November 01, 2004

Freedom Isn't Free

I've heard this a lot lately - "Freedom isn't free." When someone points out the stupidity of Bush's war against a harmless, weak country, a common response is: "Freedom isn't free."

The Frame
This frame implies that the war in Iraq is a war for our freedom. It implies that our freedom was threatened by the Iraqis. It implies we would not be free if we hadn't attacked Iraq.

But there's a problem here - if we hadn't attacked the weak, harmless Iraqis, at what point would we have lost our freedom as a result? Seriously, what was Hussein doing that would make us less free?

He had no WMDs, he had no connection to the terrorists who actually threatened us, he posed no threat whatsoever. He could not even have posed a threat according to Condoleeza Rice herself:
But in terms of Saddam Hussein being there, let's remember that his country is divided, in effect. He does not control the northern part of his country. We are able to keep arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt.

So what freedom would we have lost by leaving Iraq alone and focusing more effectively on Osama bin Laden and al Quaeda?

Don't get me wrong, freedom really isn't free. But the price of freedom is not pointless war, it's eternal vigilance:
The unconstitutional excesses that have irreparably diluted our freedom have, without exception, arisen from heavy-handed overreaction to crises that did not really exist.

Citizens must speak up against those who threaten our freedom, soldiers must fight against those who threaten our freedom, voters must vote for freedom, and the press must alert us to threats to our freedom. We all have our parts to play.

So where are the current threats to our freedom? How about the people who threaten the rights granted to us under the constitution - like those who crafted the ABUSE A PATRIOT act, those who feel it's OK to lock people up indefinitely without charges or trial, those who want to pass a new law that makes it so the government never has to disclose where and why someone was disappeared.
From Section 201: Prohibition of Disclosure of Terrorism Investigation Detainee Information
...the government need not disclose information about individuals detained in investigations or terrorism until disclosure occurs routinely upon the initiation of criminal charges.

Those are actual, current threats to our freedom.

Let's send those people home - give them a timeout to think about their actions and why they were wrong. Maybe they can come back out when they're ready to play nice.

Nah, probably not.


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