Bring back the Bill
Re: “Organize to Bring Back the Bill of Rights” 1/11/02
Young people in this country have taken their rights for granted. Those who obey the laws in this country may feel they will never become a target, but a short look at recent history paints a different picture. During the Nazi regime, not only Jews were persecuted, but ordinary citizens who spoke up against the government were jailed and murdered. Is this what we want for our country?
Liberty and democracy is a very fragile system of government. Those with power and money want to take away ordinary citizens rights for their own profit. Your article hit the nail on the head. Bill Clinton found and tried terrorists without taking away our rights. Why can’t Bush do it? The answer is easy. Bush wants to take away our rights for profit.
How can concerned Americans act to protect our Bill of Rights? How can we put an end to corporate control of almost everything in our country? Most people are really asleep, apparently unconcerned about their loss of freedom, and I don’t see anyone in the mainstream media acting as a watchdog. An un-elected president represents Big Business, while arrogant, elitist ‘controllers’ run the country. This is a serious issue that requires real action. The time has come for a new Democract party that has concern for all the people at its heart. Let’s get started by voting the Republican House out of office in 2002.
John Ashcroft doesn’t seem to believe in the American justice system that he is sworn to uphold. They already have military justice systems in Iraq and Iran. Just tell John to “Love it or leave it!”
Legalizing Marijuana 1/10/02
Re: “America’s Lonely Drug War”
Great article on such a serious issue. There are some very powerful interest groups in the United States who are obviously keen to protect the status quo, and the effects are felt around the Western world. We need sensible, humane government policies on this issue that remove the criminal element and the great human suffering that goes with it. It is one of the biggest health issue of our time and urgently needs addressing.
I was in Ireland as that country announced decriminalisation of marijuana. It is utterly preposterous that our government maintains a stance on drugs that is clearly ineffective and reactionary. It just shows, yet again, that our government does not exist for the people, but as a technique to keep people subservient and scared. Freedom in this country is a joke.
I think this article hit at the core of the US drug control policy in a clear and fair manner. The drug policy is enslaving a generation into the prison system, a result that can only have detrimental affects on our nation’s future. By labelling drug users “criminals,” we have only seen a soaring crime rate, and the war on drugs has cost the US to no avail. The bonds of these chains, if ever broken, will take generations to overcome.
Wrong Conclusion 1/10/02
Re: “A Victory for the Star Wars Lobby”
Hartung presents an interesting point of view, but his closing lines are ludicrous. Calling the ABM system an attempt to “dominate” the world misses the obvious distinction between offense and defense. Do we still have to listen to the outmoded voices of “mutually assured destruction”?
As someone who was active in the Nuclear Freeze movement in the conservative heartland in the 80’s, I recall that Star Wars was Reagan’s attempt to do an end run around the growing antinuclear movement. Reagan claimed the program was purely defensive and succeeded in obscuring public debate, but the Union of Concerned Scientists did a good job then of public education. Where are they now? That the program enjoys congressional support after 9/11 is truly incomprehensible. Did the attacks not show that missile defense is essentially irrelevant to real national security? Has the scientific community (as well as Congress) been smothered by an avalanche of cheap plastic flags from China?
Department of Chemistry
> Indiana University
Re: “Blaming America First”
My proudly liberal son sent me Todd Gitlin’s piece, “Blaming America First” as somewhat of a challenge to his unabashedly flag-waving, right-tilting, 50-something Republican father. Normally, I would never knowingly read anything from your magazine, but I decided to give it a try.
Wow! What a pleasant surprise! Finally, someone who could, and would, take the Left to task in its own editorial backyard for its globalized hypocrisy and crazed-ostrich view of America. Wanting more, I searched for more of Gitlin’s articles, and I discovered a card-carrying 60s anti-war radical with a “liberal” portfolio of thoughtful, balanced writings from multiculturalism to the labor movement. And, horror of horrors, now I’m a fan!
How can I ever explain to my conservative friends that apparently not all liberal college professors are teaching our children to hate everything for which America stands or that I’ve found one who, without apology, rationally argues that there exists among Americans a common moral, political and social ground upon which we all — right and left — can stand together? Now THAT is a radical thought!
I’m an hour’s drive from NYU, professor. Any openings in your class next semester?
New Hartford, CT
First to Go
I used to respect Mother Jones, but since I saw Bill Hogan refuse to say a critical word about the Bush administration on C-Span’s Washington Journal, I knew something was up. Instead, the only person Mr. Hogan criticized was Al Gore for sins and wrongdoings that are negligible in the face of what Bush’s administration is doing. Now I see that you have stopped the Bush Files column. It seems the conservatives who have bought out all the mainstream media are now going after the liberal/progressive sources. What a shame that Mother Jones is one of the first ones to go.