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Democracy is hanging by a thread

AT A Bush rally in suburban New Jersey while Laura Bush was speaking, Sue Niederer, whose son was killed in Iraq in February, spoke out against the killings and the war. She wore a T-shirt with the words "President Bush You Killed My Son." She was handcuffed, arrested, and hauled off by police ("In N.J., Laura Bush stumps for spouse on Democratic turf," Sept. 17, Page 17). This incident truly frightens me.

As upset as I've been with Bush administration policies, this was a jolting wake-up call. What happened to freedom of speech, the right to protest? Don't we see what's happening right here on our own soil?

Democracy is being eroded, bit by bit, in our own country by the Bush administration while it pretends to be fighting for democracy in Iraq. It uses democracy as one excuse for an unprovoked invasion of another country while it tramples our civil rights back here at home. Talk about diversion. This is another example of this regime saying one thing and doing another to coldly advance its hidden agendas.

This administration continues to spew out lies -- Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, our GIs will be welcomed as liberators -- and refuses to admit what a mess it has gotten us into.

So many innocent lives have been lost; the deficit has skyrocketed. The Bush-Cheney marketers are masters of deceit, distortion, and manipulation. Skillfully using their fear tactics, they're hoping they have lulled the American people into mindless marionettes marching to the tune of "My president right or wrong."

Wake up, America! We can't be so obtuse that we can't see that Bush's unrelenting thirst for power is destroying us at home and abroad in the eyes of the world. We've lost the respect of other nations. They see what's happening. Why can't we?

Let's break this vicious cycle and prove to the world that Americans cannot be hoodwinked another four years by this imperialist megalomaniac and his cronies.

Democracy, which is hanging by a thread in this beloved country of ours, still gives us the right to choose our leaders. If we have to endure four more years of this out-of-control administration, I'm not sure we will still have that right.

DEBORAH C. WINSLOW
Lenox
 

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