Freedom is just another word

by — Dec. 15, 2000 (Comments)

An election was held in a country famous for being free. I have been voting in this particular country for 47 years. I went to college in my late 30s. My education was interesting, thorough and enlightening. As a history and women’s history major, I learned a lot about this country. Some of it I didn’t like, most of it I did.

I took a Logic class in college. My professor and I disagreed about who ruled the country. I was absolutely positive that the minority could rule. My professor said that the majority always rules. He said that was a given, and there was no room for argument, because history has proven that this has always been the case. I would love to be able to talk with this professor today as I agonize over having been right.

The year 2000 shows the majority (Democrats) voted and won. However, the highest court in the land of this country prevailed and ruled for the minority (Republicans) vote. For the first time in history, the minority won. Nothing I learned over the years could have prepared me for something that was in none of the history books, nor any of my professors could possibly have taught. Every word on the page of every history text I studied was wrong.

I understand that books and, now media, are slanted toward what is happening in the world at the time. Oh, I believe they have tried to be objective but that only works in a robot society, and I would even question that. However, slanting history is a small part when compared to teaching out and out lies. I realize that my professor could never have foreseen the outcome of the 2000 election when he said, the minority never rules. Nor could he have foreseen that the highest court in the country make a partisan decision based on their needs and wants, forsaking the majority of the population and what they want.

Yes, I am concerned about my retirement (just as 2 of those justices are). Could I make a decision based on what I need at the detriment of the whole country (even as a person who has always been terrified of being a bag lady in my old age)? I would like to think (growing up in the Midwest with good old-fashioned morals and values) that I wouldn’t.

This is a history lesson to us and to our children that shows how to get what you want at any cost. Make enough friends in influential and high places, have the money to back you up, have enough people that owe you (because you have done favors for them) and you can achieve anything you could possibly dream. You don’t have to work and earn it; all you have to do is follow the above recipe. Is this what we want to teach our children? Is this what we want for ourselves?

I am a caregiver and feel a deep abiding commitment to my family and friends. However, this lesson that has been taught to the world illuminates throughout, that if I don’t take what I need, grab what I want, I will be left on the street and someone else will be enjoying my family and friends. Someone who knows how to get what they want anyway they can, will grab what is mine. Watch out behind you, someone is ready to assault your freedom, your democracy and your Rights, if they haven’t already.