Monday, January 17, 2005
"I Have A Dream..."
On that day Rev. King spoke of promise, hope, and desire. He spoke of hard times passed and good times to come. He spoke of hatred and love; despair and determination. But most of all, he spoke of the future.
- I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification - one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.
You see, Rev. King knew that everything couldn't happen today. Things that matter take time. As the saying goes: "Rome wasn't built in a day." But we live in a society that wants instant gratification. We want things now. It doesn't matter how or why, as long as we get what we want and the future be damned. The evidence is in our leadership.
I'm so old that I can remember when our government was forward looking. Remember Bill Clinton's first campaign song, "Don't Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow)?" And what about that "Bridge to the Twenty-first Century?" President Clinton understood that the power of our nation didn't rest in the here and now, but in our future. Just as Rev. King spoke about the days to come, President Clinton spoke of tomorrows. They spoke of a better America.
George W. Bush doesn't understand this. George W. Bush doesn't look to the future when it comes to our country. Take education for instance. No Child Left Behind doesn't prepare our students for the future, it prepares them to pass a test today. At what point in their life is it going to be beneficial to know that the answer is almost never "E?" At what point in their life will it benefit them to know the "guess and check" method of mathematical problem solving? Outside of a standardized test, there is no use for these skills. We are preparing our students for today, not tomorrow. We're trying to improve our test scores immediately so that we look good today, to hell with what the future might bring.
Another example could be drawn form George Bush's handling of the budget surplusses. You remember surplusses don't you? Sure you do, they're the things that were squansered by the Bush tax cuts. To listen to them now, the Bush administration likes to say that the initial tax cuts were implemented as a way to help stimulate an economy that was in recession. But that's not what they were saying at the time.
- "People need to know that over the next ten years it is going to be $25 trillion of revenue that comes into our treasurey and we anticipate spending $21 trillion. And my plan say why don't we pass 1.3 trillion of that back to the people who pay the bills? Surely we can afford 5% of the $25 trillion that are coming into the treasury to the hard working people that pay the bills. There is a difference of opinion. My opponent thinks the government -- the surplus is the government's money. That's not what I think. I think it's the hard-working people of America's money and I want to share some of that money with you so you have more money to build and save and dream for your families. It's a difference of opinion. It's a difference between government making decisions for you and you getting more of your money to make decisions for yourself."
George W. Bush
October 3, 2000
First Presidential Debate
So much for "save for a rainy day." Let's get the most out of it now and screw the future. It sure would be nice if we still had those surplusses to fall back on wouldn't it? Oh well, woulda-shoulda-coulda. Planning is for liberals.
What it comes down to is this: George W. Bush is threatening the future of our country with his live for today, take tomorrow as it comes attitude. While this may be the mantra of Generation X, the X-treme crowd, and aging rock-stars, it can not be the plan for our country's future. We need something more secure. The results may not be immediate, but as they say (one more cliche) patience is a virtue. As Democrats we have to do all we can to stop George W. Bush from threatening the future of our country any further. His erratic policies and haphazard planning are pushing our country ever closer to the brink of disaster for future generations. We must act now to stop this. It won't happen today, in fact it won't happen tomorrow either, but over time we can begin to regain the promise that our future once held.
By the way, with all of this talk about Social Security these days, I have to ask this: Does anybody remember what was in Al Gore's lockbox?
Al got it, why didn't George?