Wednesday, May 17, 2006

A Moral Stain

George Washington once said that while he believed it was inevitable that the white settlers would rule the continent, he also felt it was important we not leave a moral stain on the country in the process.

The Anchoress who is becoming one of my favorite bloggers posted the following:

On a small handful of right-wing blogs, I’m seeing links to this story in the AP, about a terrible rape/murder and the sentencing of the perp.

I could understand if the blogs discussing this terrible crime were pointing out the usual -ie that the press had buried the perp’s citizenship status at the end of the story. At a time when citizenship is front-and-center in the news, it is not unreasonable to expect to see such information closer to the lede.

But what I am seeing from several bloggers, is something more along the lines of (I’m paraphrasing), “these are the sorts of animals George W. Bush and his cultists and want to let stay in our country!” What I am seeing is nothing less than rank demagoguery meant to foment hate and fear and to keep others in a a whipped up state of frenzy. It is needlessly provocative and could end up encouraging some tragic behavior.

No, I’m sorry. Pointing to a horrible story, or two, or ten, as a means of illustrating the “rightness” of your hardline on the issue of illegal immigration does not work. Are these far-rightwing bloggers asserting that American citizens don’t get coked up on drugs and don’t commit heinous crimes? Do I have to run down the names of “legal,” natural-born citizens who have committed unspeakable atrocities?

What is next, lynch mobs? Men in white sheets protecting American womanhood?

When I was a small child my grandmother told me a story of Oklahoma, long ago.

Two Indians had a local saddler make them a saddle for a new horse. The day they went to pick the saddle up the man was not home and after taking payment for the saddle his wife pulled a gun on them and told them to leave. One of the men killed her with a knife. They were panic stricken and so they tried to dispose of the body by feeding her to the pigs. They failed.

Once the Indians were apprehended by the Law some locals, who were part of a vigilante group associated with the KKK, grabbed the accused men and demanded their particular form of justice. Right now.

My greatgrandfather Finnis refused to have anything to do with it, in fact he tried to help the Indians by sending word to the US Marshal. Too late. The Indians were tied to wagon wheels and doused with coal oil and sit on fire. Their bodies were strung up. Finnis had his barn burned down, with his best cow in it. He packed up the wife and kids and left the area and moved to Texas for three years until he thought it would be safe to go back.

These men were not monsters. They did not have two heads. They did not rob banks. They were regular people who were afflicted by the disease of hatred.

I hope I never see that kind of hatred in this country but when I read things like the above and when I look at the comment section of a blog and read a post saying that if we just go down to the border and kill everyone crossing, just kill them all...the problem will be solved...I think of what Washington said.

Moral Stain. And I feel something like shame.


Luther said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Luther said...


At the risk of sounding astonishingly stupid, upon which I would have no defense. Let me say:

This has long been a country of ideals, good one's for the most part.

As a country, we have sometimes fallen short and may be, perhaps today. We are not perfect.

I would just submit that we have advanced the cause of individual freedom and democracy more than all the rest.

My great grandfather, living on the northern edge of the Okefenokee swamp, was accused by his neighboring landowner of allowing his cattle to graze on the neighbor's land. The neighbor shot my "great" dead, on the stoop of his house. Family watching. But yet, we go forward.

I have spent most of my life trying to live up to my self imposed ideals (good ones I hope). I fail on an almost daily basis.

But, I am better now than I was then.

There is much frustration in this country, over one thing and another. And there will always be extremists on any issue.

Much of the "so-called" big issues of late, are not so big. Many wish to inflate for various reasons. But the issue that should concern us all, is the continuation of these United States of America.

How I wish we had an Andrew Jackson at the helm. His methods were not always PC. But his single-mindedness in keeping his country intact were critical. He would likely think today's rhetoric mild.

Putting aside the Demo's/Leftist (Hate America), we should all keep focus on the "Big Picture" (used to love that series by the way, bet no one here remembers it).

Lost my point, other than to say, we should not exclude any data stream. Read, compute and decide. What the hell else can I do?

Brought to you by a sound measure of Christan Brothers Brandy. Not the best, but legal.

Unknown said...


Thank you for the comment, it was interesting and thoughtful.


If we had an Andrew Jackson at the helm right now a Hugo Chavez clone would probably be running Mexico and the mullahs would be regular visitors in Mexico City along with Fidel. A third of our oil comes from Venezuala and Mexico, King Andrew did not have to think about such things.

I had a great great however many grandmothers in the Trail of Tears. Ol Hickory had his day, but I don't think this is the time for that.

My point is that in the name of securing the border.. I am seeing and hearing some things I find offensive. That does not help the cause at all. It only feeds all the old stereotypes of right wingnuts and is counter productive and just flat mean... There are also people out there who might take it upon themselves to act on these it is in our best interests to tamp down the rhetroic. Because sometimes people do bad things.

Jack said...

It is one side of the demagogic coin.

The other side is President Bush holding up a Marine and implying that this is the face of illegal aliens.