Last week I walked up Fulton Street in New York, crossed Broadway and stepped into the St. Paul’s Chapel. A board said it was part of the Trinity Church right across from Wall Street where I had just been meditating after doing research in the Financial District.
I gazed around the modest looking and quiet locale that had been in use since 1776, the official beginning of America’s nationhood, and noticed a table and walls full of pictures of fallen heroes rescuing victims during 9/11, which happened a little over 200 years later. I didn’t realize the Chapel had been a resting place for those brave men and woman who in heroic efforts saved other people’s lives from the ashes of what once were the heralded World Trade Towers, and lost their lives in doing so.
I then walked on to ground zero, with mixed feelings. I had been there years ago after it was first opened to the public. The same ugly depressing blue fence was still prohibiting a clear view. Works were going on now for the foundation of the Freedom Towers. We are almost ten years later and the only thing visible was a huge crater where bulldozers and scrapers rolled in the deep like Lego pieces.
An eerie feeling crept up my stomach. What I had been seeing in the USA for the last few years was anything but the remembrance of what had hit it in 2001. The euphoria about chasing the crazed culprits from Afghanistan and giving these miscreants their deserved come-uppance has ebbed away and made room for apologies to those same origins of evil. Bowing to sheiks. America’s “intolerance”. Islam is peace. Just this week some well-known high ranking socialist politicians were calling protesters “un-American”. Earlier in the week they had compared them with Nazis wielding swastikas.
As a foreigner, having lived through World War II, this got me really upset. I did see Nazis killing relatives, laughing at their wounds or cut off limbs; stealing Jews, – men, women and children – from their homes and sending them to gas chambers. I did see swastikas on the sleeves of these dreaded Gestapo men, who ruthlessly shot people in their face or dumped them alive in mass graves. I know what Nazism is. Do they? I have lived it. Do they have a clue? Do you realize you pay these people their expensive salaries, perks and healthcare plans that you can’t afford?
How can a Speaker of the House, third in line to the Presidency, say such things unpunished? Nobody in the press reacted (think what would have happened if Boehner or John McCain would have made such comment!) What has happened to the United States since 9/11? How come you Americans voted for this administration and its congress? Did you realize what you were doing or have you changed so much that you don’t even care? Why does the great USA have a President who condones such insane language? Aren’t you at fault yourselves?
As I see it from my Mars vantage point, you are going through very bad times. I am appalled about where these human beings come from. Nazis? Swastikas? Un-American? Are you going hopping mad?
It is a somber realization. I don’t recognize you anymore. In 1776, a great nation was born. In 2009, 236 years later that great nation is crumbling from internal strife. You think the civil war was bad. True, it’s not civil war yet. But it’s heading there: it is a very uncivil strife and could get worse. This is not leadership of the greatest free nation on earth. This is selling it out to evil doers, inside and outside. That is not what these brave men and women at ground zero gave their lives for.
Although as a Mars man, I cannot be but politically neutral in the USA, I cannot be neutral where it concerns the universal basic human rights of freedom of speech, freedom to earn, freedom to pray, freedom to choose and defense of the nation and the unborn. Those are principles that any rightful nation considers basic rights, and worth defending. Looking around there is only a handful of nations that appear to have achieved these wonderful rights, totally or at least partially. Many peoples are still under the thumb of thugs and thieves. However, if you yourselves start calling your own Nazis, and there is no word from the top or the press – leave alone the voters – that this is way beyond the pale, this nation’s hard-won freedom is crumbling, I tell you, and its principles are going down the drain. Take my word.
Folks in the street, tea parties and the like, take it from the Mars Man and unite to defend what you have before it is too late and throw the bums out asap.
You call me an “alien” here, as if I am from Mars. You remember, that little E.T? So be it, I’ll be from Mars. Even the folks of the national census bureau had trouble planting me in their various boxes. No, I’m not illegal. Far from that. I’m a guest .
Well then, as a guest I must watch my words. A guest dare not make bad comments to his host for fear he be thrown out of his house. So my “free speech” is constrained by that very fact: I don’t have a vote so I can’t claim the first amendment either. However, I do live here with my eyes wide open and do observe events with my alien view.
After some 35 years, I almost feel American because your lifestyle is so contagious. It’s still the place where everyone wants to live. Many of you don’t understand why, but if you’ve been in Calcutta in India, Dhaka in Bangladesh, Lagos in Nigeria, or Mexico City, you do.
But America has changed in the years since World War II. You liberated Europe once again after losing many splendid men and women. I remember the endless flow of aircrafts coming in from England in 1945 to drop bags of food on the bare tulip fields, after we’d been eating bread made from those same tulip bulbs during the famine of 1944-’45. Many trucks came in to protect us from these dirty nazis, sometimes with no one behind the wheel because you couldn’t see them through the window screens as the drivers were black.
That’s the USA we remember, the proud and strong USA of Eisenhower that began to change in the sixties. Euphoria and decadence took over at the same time, with one exception and that were the Reagan years that did Russia in. The urban mindset in East and West turned soft, dropped its values and became complacent. Not that we in Europe did any better, to the contrary, but because America held the compass we always felt safe.
Now, we’re not so sure anymore. Oh yes, we still live and take it easy, but we’re selling our soul for Russian gaz, neglect the threat of Islamic extremism for fear of reprisals, and compromise with Iranian thugs. Because one day when you’re not there anymore to protect us, we want to be on the safe side…
See you next time.