The Real Reality
We will prevail and hopefully come back to focus on the dream of freedom - as it was intended - and how to accomplish it. For the freedom of our free world in itself these days is not without its contradictions. It is often enjoyed at the expense of others; it is freely taken for granted; it is freely given away.
We were free, as a society, in the summer of 2001 to obsess over Gary Condit and imaginings of what he did with his intern. We were free to editorialize against him. To make assumptions. To presume guilt before allowing innocence to be proved. While America watched an investigation unfold, a faction on the other side of the world was making plans to destroy freedom. Plans they enacted on September 11, while we were unaware.
Oh, we could have been aware. I - as a fairly uneducated housewife with the freedom to spend several hours pursuing the internet within the confines of my safe home - had found, by September's end, that there were many, many terrorist warnings in advance of the attacks. Warnings posted by our government on websites across the net. Warnings of acts planned against American targets. I, like everyone else, relied on the media to tell me of these warnings. And only realized that they had not warned us AFTER the fact. Sadly, I knew better... I own a newspaper. The media is as much victim of human nature as anyone else; they will take the easy way. Discussing Condit and his indiscretions is an easy kill. Drudging up terrorist plots takes time, money and a willingness to bore the American public for an awful long time before they finally listen. The media is free to choose the easy way.
For a time following 9/11, we all sat up and took notice. We all paid attention because we were scared for our lives. But time passes, and in the process, state and local governments got back to the business of governing. New laws were passed - more laws to say who is free to do what, and where, in our free world. I am told we now have to have more laws to protect us from whatever might happen next.
And our society, drunk on its freedoms and vowing not to be afraid, has returned in the face of war to flightiness. American society has the attention span of a hummingbird. Talk economy. Talk homeland security. Talk Republicans and Democrats. But do it during the commercials, because right now the Bachelorette is about to choose between two men that she's been locked in a house with for half a decade at this point, after weeding through twenty-something of them already in her search for Mr. Right. And we get to have a say tonight on America's search for new star talent and tomorrow we can watch a group of panelists decide "who is hot and who is not" - from a choice of scantily dressed young men and women. And in the next few days, there will be more about Michael Jackson - more people to debate whether he is or is not a child molester, and an expert to reveal how much of his skin is actually skin and how much, at this point, is merely plastic. Word has it, Michael himself will be given another opportunity to have his say and we just positively can't miss that... Unless it comes on opposite the Osborne’s.
And this weekend we have a "peace rally" to attend, because several famous Hollywood types say we need march. If we don't march, those crazy Republicans might come home from bombing women and children and turn their guns on us. Guns that they shouldn't be free to own anyway - and won't be, if our gun legislation passes. And if they turn, there ought to be illegal guns on us, and then we may not be able to go see those Hollywood stars in their newest movies. And if the cops try to stop us from exercising our rights to protest, we will respond by exercising our right to free speech and shout over them. And if that doesn't work, we will destroy things and hurt people because it is our right, because after all, this is a free country. Besides, shouting and destruction WORKS. We know, we saw it on TV not too long ago - the animal rights activists effectively ruined a fashion show where people were peddling furs made from innocent animals by tossing fake blood on the models.
And when these activities fail to amuse us any longer, we will go on Dr's Phil's program, and he will give us some words of wisdom - he will soothe our souls, strengthen our spirits, and help us return to our television sets with dignity. And just in time... There's going to be a new reality show that each week profiles the life of a real, actual military person fighting for our freedom. We're not sure if we're going to watch it though, because wouldn't you know it - the show comes on opposite Fear Factor.
It's a free country. We can indulge ourselves in whatever entertainment we wish... Whether it be stepping on the freedoms of others, or watching reality shows when our own reality gets a little boring. Or protesting our government, our soldiers, our right to defend ourselves and our free world.
To argue with President Bush... during the commercials.