Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The Dangers of Speaking Up

As I post on my blog and others, as I start marketing the new Gooding Drinking Liberally club in my small rural town in Idaho (the 2nd reddest state in the nation), and as I start becoming more visible while expressing my views, I begin to wonder... what will be the consequences for my actions? While on one hand, the Bush administration (and their glassy-eyed followers) continously repeat their claims that my brother and 2301 other Americans died for democracy and to "keep America free", these same individuals are doing their best to remove our freedom of speech, our freedom to protest, and even the freedom to think for ourselves.

All one has to do is read about the woman who was physically removed from a campaign rally or the arrest of the protestors in NYC to start worrying about consequences for Americans who publicly speak up.

But those are big events, right? It wouldn't happen in Idaho, you might think. WRONG.

All one has to do is have their young son answer the phone to be told, "Tell your mother to shove it up her a**!" after writing a letter to the editor to start worrying about consequences for Idahoans who publicly speak up.

All one has to do is receive nasty letters from members of your church, as well as attempts to have you banished from your church, after they've learned about your beliefs--and you will start worrying about consequences for Idahoans who publicly speak up.

When do we say "enough is enough" and this truly is a country that believes in democracy and freedom? Do we wait until people lose their jobs? Will that be enough? Do we wait until people are arrested? Will that be enough?

What will happen to Idahoans who speak up? What happens to our legislators who do speak up, whether Democrat or Republican? Are any of our legislators AFRAID to speak up for fear of reprisals from their friends or their church? Are we willing to accept negative consequences for ourselves and others? Are conservative Idahoans willing to restrict basic democratic freedoms to the liberal minority?

Oh, yeah, I forgot... conservative Idahoans already have proven that they are willing to restrict basic democratic freedoms to minorities. And too many of the rest of us are too scared to stop them.

This must stop. We must not allow our freedoms to be taken away from us, in the name of "democracy".

First they came for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up,
because I wasn’t a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up,
because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak up,
because I was a Protestant.

Then they came for me,
and by that time,
there was no one left to speak up for me.

by Rev. Martin Niemoller, 1945

3 comments:

sisyphus said...

I wanted to write to tell you you're not alone. I very much admire what you're doing and the way you're doing it. Keep using your constitutional rights before you lose them. I'm a refugee from the region so I know your struggle. I think if you keep talking to your neighbors you will find you are not alone. You are truly brave to confront the enmity of your detractors. Keep it up and this insanity will be defeated because you fight in the cause of truth, justice and your brother's memory.

Diana Rowe Pauls said...

Thank you so much for your kind words and support. It means more than words can express, to know that others understand, to know that I'm not alone...

HummerGirl_626 said...

I just want to say I shut down my other blog on xanga. I did so so I could invest the time I have on the computer w/ talking to you. I still have my hummergirl_626 blog here still, so you can comment on it. I haven't heard from you in awhile. I know, I haven't updated in awhile, but I will today. I do really feel like just shutting this one down, but for the sake of talking to you, I won't. I just wish more people would comment.
Have a great day, and keep up the great work!!!

Hummer Girl