What kind of bleeding heart liberal would ever say such a thing? Particularly one who has spent so much of his life’s energy trying to explain the truth of war to those who still believe it to be some sort of John Wayne, Ronald Reagan sick, great adventure that makes men out of boys and democracies out of chaos?
The reality is that the word war is the only word that can truly carry the weight of what must be done and done as soon as possible. It must be a war charged with as much force, albeit a vastly more loving force, as the wars that the rabid right and so-called Christian conservatives inject into their wars of aggression and theft and mass murder.
Our first target must be the schools. The rabid right and so-called Christian conservatives have been bleeding them dry since 1980 and then proclaiming the entire public school system a failure. Education does not come on the cheap, but ignorance and right wing insanity does. We must rebuild our school system from the debris left behind by too many budget cuts and too many tax cuts.
Cradle to grave education will be free for all. Preschool and day care will be staffed by people who have passed the most rigorous screenings and who will be trained for a minimum of two years in the skills necessary to provide our smallest rug rats with the foundation for the education they will be offered into the future. Before school and after school programs will also be universal and free so that there is always a safe haven for those children who, for whatever reason, would otherwise be left to their own devices without adult supervision.
We must forever seal off our public schools from the many religious maniacs who would steal our tax money and hand it over to schools that will only take like minded children who have already proven their ability to learn. This will leave the public schools with the children who have greatest difficulty in learning, be it from disabilities or home problems or hunger. This must stop forever. If religious schools want to take children from our public schools, let them find the funding from their followers, not steal those funds that are so valuable to those children blessed with the teachers and staff that our public school systems employ.
All churches will pay taxes on any funds they receive from their followers or any other sources. These taxes can be reduced through the creation of free assistance programs that must be offered to all regardless of personal beliefs. Churches may apply for regular government funds to increase the scope of their work but, again, no one may be refused assistance or comfort due to a differing view of god.
All money must forever removed from our political system. Small amounts of taxpayer funds will be provided to those who wish to run for office and all television, radio and other media outlets will be required to provide prime time and continuous access by the candidates to the voters free of charge. If anyone takes even a penny, be it in cash or favors for themselves or others, then the penalty will be lengthy prison terms and a permanent removal from the election process. All government business will done in the light of day and any agreements that harm others will be automatically challenged and negated. All Americans will have access to their elected officials but none may do so as a part of any cabal meant to cheat others of the benefits of life.
Poverty must be eradicated forever. We must forever remove those who believe that a huge percentage of our population must be forced into a situation of unemployment and poverty so that their sick economic policies can be inflicted on the poorest by the wealthiest. Full employment, and that means a living wage and health and safety conditions of the highest quality, must be this nation’s ultimate and immediate goal. Every person who can work will. Those who cannot work because of physical or mental or other conditions will be cared for as they strive to find an honorable path to self-sufficiency.
We must wage war against those who would keep health care only for the few. For the wealthiest nation on earth to continue to sell life saving medical care is obscene. Universal healthcare must become reality. We must also use the vast resources that our government controls to pay for the raw research that all great scientific leaps are founded on. All discoveries using that research must be shared with the nation at a reasonable cost.
We must focus our nation’s energies on curing the most horrendous diseases mankind faces. HIV/AIDS, cancer, birth defects and all the other debilitating conditions can, like polio and smallpox, become a subject for history classes, not the medical community.
The act of polluting our air and water and soil must become a criminal act. It should be at least on the level of criminal assault and any deaths that arise from pollution must be charged as manslaughter. It must be the people who rule the corporation who will be charged and who will face the most dire sentences since it is they, and not the bodiless and soulless corporate buildings they inhabit, that are the cause. Even if the act of polluting does not result in the immediate harm to a human being, that corporation will face large and non-negotiable fines and tax penalties. Corporate American can produce clean products, clean energy and clean services at a profit and most assuredly will if the penalties for pollution are severe and equally applied.
We must wage war on anyone who stands in the way of the creation of clean, renewable energy resources. Oil and its resultant pollution has become just another form of war against the people of the world and that will cease. The government will wage this war with tax credits and financial incentives that will make the research possible and the production profitable. All forms of renewable energy must be developed in such a way that any person can create that energy at home and at the lowest possible cost.
All forms of transportation must be designed with the safety of the passengers as well as everyone in the vicinity of the vehicle paramount. Cars will cease to be seen as some sick status symbol and will return to the simple process of moving people from one point to another in safety, comfort and quiet.
Our military/industrial complex must be tamed and their ingenuity refocused on peaceful measures. Yes, America will always need a standing army but only as a last defense. Weapons of war must disable an enemy, not kill or maim. No innocent lives must ever again be lost to the stupidities of the cowards and fanatics that steal power and abuse it for their own ends. We must cease selling arms to other nations and must severely punish those that do through economic and diplomatic measures.
We must wage war on the leaders of the world who would harm others in their quest for power. The best path to that end is for America to begin building schools and hospitals and roads and everything that a society needs to pull themselves up into the 21st Century. These acts will only be offered to nations that agree to provide free, equal education for all of their citizens and agree to never commit any act of aggression against any other nation or people. As America’s reputation for evil and greed recedes, our efforts toward a world free of want and pain and war will become dominant. Our bounty will be for those who support freedom and peace alone.
We must wage war on the idea that any religion is superior to any other. All are different paths to the same goal. No religion will gain prominence over any other and all will refrain from any acts that are meant to cause tensions or disagreements. NO religion will be allowed any power over the government. The government will administer itself with kindness and justice and generosity but will never be guided by the narrow precepts of any religion because that way lies the purest of evil.
America must relearn what is truly important in life. Wealth and material possessions must be seen as the distraction from happiness and peace that they are. To have much more than another must be seen as the corruption and incitement to violence that it has always proven itself to be. The nation will cease operating on the false assumption that capitalism is the state religion and must turn aside from that evil towards a world where those who benefit society are respected and those who would steal from society seen as the evil this nation in this era has proven it to be.
Those who provide the most valuable services to mankind will be paid accordingly. Teachers, medical personnel, childcare workers, firefighters and all the other professions that leave in their wake a more secure world will receive the greatest bounty for their efforts. Those who would only rely on their childish and soulless ability to amass wealth would be taxed accordingly.
Finally, America will acknowledge that all progress and all hopes must be focused on that most valuable and fragile wealth we have; our children. Everything must be organized so that, in the end, the children benefit and grow stronger. Once we have achieved success in that endeavor, then life for all, as we move into and through the ages of the adult, will be softened and pleasant.
These and many others are the wars that must be fought. And wars they will be because greed and selfishness and hate are firmly entrenched in our society and they will not be moved save from the greatest efforts of all. This will not be a war of violence, though. We must never stoop to their level nor use their hate filled tactics. Instead, this war will be fought in the voting booth and in the streets as we demand change through peaceful movements. It will fought door to door as we speak to our neighbors and our friends and we calmly but clearly explain the hell that we have wrought but the peace and freedom that we can achieve. Yes, violence and hatred is what we will be met with but all great movements go through the same stages that Gandhi so eloquently described as “First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.”
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