Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Wrapped in the flag

Note: I wrote the following to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel on Sunday mostly because I really do like the idea of constitutional government, but also because so much of the political discourse from the Right has been wrapped in the flag in recent years. I wanted to frame Impeachment as a patriotic action, and I'm pleased with the way it turned out.

The Sun-Sentinel is published in Rep. Wexler's congressional district.

At http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/opinion/sfl-editgsimpeachsbjun12,0,916824.story, the Editorial Board published an opinion piece which begins:

Issue: Some in Congress want an impeachment

And concludes:

BOTTOM LINE: Get on with REAL issues.

It is not only some people in Congress who want impeachment, and feel it is a "REAL" issue. We want impeachment for the reasons that this nation's Founders went to the trouble of of establishing the United States in the first place: in order to form a more perfect union. If we settle for Bush and Cheney's theory of a Unitary Executive acting above and outside the law, then we will no longer live in Lincoln's "nation of laws". The Constitution of the United States, which Mr. Bush has twice sworn to protect and defend, will have indeed become what Mr. Bush has also described it: "just a god-damned piece of paper!"

My third-grade son knows that the Constitution is the foundation of the Republic of the United States. It doesn't take a constitutional attorney to work this out. If you would pledge allegiance to the flag and the Republic for which it stands, then you must take the defense of the constitution seriously: and the extra-constitutional declaration of war against Iraq is just one of thirty-five charges of high crimes and misdemeanors that Representatives Kucinich and Wexler brought to the House of Representatives this week. They,like Mr. Bush, take an oath of office, to preseve and protect the Constitution. They have no higher duty as our elected delegates. We know that Mr. Bush lied to us about the reasons for going to war, and has sacrificed the lives of over 4,000 US troops for what is still no good reason. We are not safer: the danger we find the Republic in has not diminished, but persisted and grown under this administration's leadership - to the Constitution's cost.

The bottom line, then, is that Kucinich and Wexler are dealing with the very real, basic, issue, which is worth every minute of their time, ours, and yours: the continuing, constitutional, existence of the foundations of the United States. Perhaps you think gossip, tittle-tattle and turf wars matter more than the real Constitutional issues Mr. Bush's presidency has raised: if so, you are free to call in your editorial pages for a Continental Congress which seeks to recognize that the Republic is defunct, and a new Constitution establishing a new form of government is almost eight years overdue.

I, for one, would not wish you success in such an endeavor.

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