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The enemy is not world opinion

In the aftermath of the horrendous school shooting in Florida I have something to say to fellow Americans living in Europe, who not only grieve at yet another mowing down of our young, but are furious at world opinion that is judging us harshly: the enemy is not world opinion. The enemy is the National Rifle Association and its 5-million-strong membership which gives it enough cash to buy Republicans—in both Senate and Congress—several times over, making these heartless and corrupt so-called public servants complicit in the systematic murder of Americans–schoolchildren and others.


I will remind them that the enemy is the toxic simpleton (“covfefe”,“fake news”) that the benighted and uninformed half of the country has elected leader of the free world. To be fair, I would add that, although President Obama tried, he didn’t bring much to the table in terms of gun control. But he was fighting against great odds—a black President and a liberal, he had a minority in both houses and a country divided, on his hands.  Everything he achieved, mainly restoring America’s image in the world after the catastrophic Bush-Cheney eight years, he did with little elbow room.

Still, all the immense problems we face bemuse the civilized world which has long since stopped the practices that plague the United States. Guns are banned, capital punishment not on the books.  Western democracies Japan, Australia and New Zealand and others don’t, the way we do, let the poor take care of themselves, nor punish people pursuing higher education by indenturing them for life to student loans, nor would they let go scot-free white policemen murdering the black youths on our streets, or fill prisons far beyond capacity. Measures that the nasty and blind Republican politicians take with a vengeance, the net result of which is to turn this land of opportunity into a hopeless treadmill for all but the well-off. And a land in the process of environmental annihilation. Thank you, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Scott Pruitt, et al. Difficult to take heart in the face of such incredible and criminal waste except by knowing that history will not be kind to you. In fact, it will not even remember you.

So, we should not be offended because the French, the Brits, the Belgians or the Germans don’t understand our dysfunction. We can explain till we’re blue in the face that the United States is a huge country and a confederation, with federal, state, county and municipal laws and officials, they will not buy it. We shouldn’t buy it either. Yes, the United States is a huge country and a confederation, it has diverse populations, complicated problems, is hostage to special interests and a slimy Republican party, and that is what needs fixing. Taking offense at how the world judges us should not be a priority in the face of more pressing ones.

  1. Mary McKinley
    February 27, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Right on, Saideh! Remind them that the current occupant of the White House lost the popular vote by 3 million and that we who share your values are doing everything we can to turn this menace back. We share our European friends’ horror. We contribute to the ACLU, the IRC, to our candidates in the mid-term elections. We fight back.


  2. Gharib
    February 28, 2018 at 7:55 am

    as usual, accurate factual and logical bravo and thank you,

    Liked by 1 person

  3. March 1, 2018 at 2:21 am

    Reblogged this on Random and Sundry Things and commented:


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