Removing my head from the sand for a moment

I try not to be political, I really do. I generally believe that if everybody minded their own beeswax and just got on with shit that everything would work out best. Do unto others. But sometimes…I just have to say something.

I am from Texas. This does not mean I love President Bush. This, in fact, means that I can disapprove even more of the president than the average American because people actually say to me,

“Well, he’s from Texas, isn’t he, doesn’t that mean you like him?”

Just like every person in Boston loves baked beans and all Chinese eat fortune cookies (ha!), I rode a horse to school every day, Texans all walk around saying “Howdy howdy howdy” in their cowhide Cavenders and adore the current president. In a way more destructive than any other president before, Bush has diminished the American reputation in international circles, and caused a cataclysm of ill will and murderous intent to descend on our nation and our people.

September 11 was a horrific event for our country, and to this day I still have difficulty watching the videos on television of that day, as if my own family were murdered. Yesterday driving to work, I worried again about the next September 11th-esque event. I worried again that Bush’s actions in Iraq have brought it’s certainty upon us with wicked speed. I worry every day, when will it happen again, when will it hit, where will it hit? And I know that’s what al Qaeda wants, but Jesus, I am just a person here. I am just trying to feed myself, have some clothes to wear, take care of my kids. Watch a few movies. The rest of the world’s governments can go fuck themselves, seriously. I do not oppose helping people. I do not oppose freedom and happiness and decent possibilities for our families and our futures.

What I do oppose is “helping” people who didn’t want our help in the first place. If they wanted it bad enough they could have taken care of it, not unlike what we did in the Revolutionary War. Yes, kill Osama and all of his rat bastard motherfuckers, please, eliminate them. But send a few select supertrained commandos, in the night rain hell on them one by one, but don’t send my brother, my son, my husband to IRAQ to start a fire that has no end.

I remember when it all started, I was washing the dishes when I heard on the news out of the corner of my ear that Bush was starting things with Iraq. I walked into the living room, wet gloves on my hands, suds running down to my elbows, staring at the TV saying “What the fuck for?”

It’s like knowing there’s a nest of wasps outside your neighbors’ house and going over there and slamming it with a baseball bat, then standing around and going, “Oh, God, look, honey, wasps. They’re not grateful for what I’ve done?” Cause they stung your daddy? Cause you just think your neighbor’s house doesn’t need wasp nests?

Yeah, you’re the one with the bat, not the wasps. But the wasps can sting your ass until you go into anaphylactic shock and your body. shuts. down. We may have a bat but we’re not invincible. There is a limit to what America can take. Should fucking take, actually.

There is no need to paint Iraq red-white-and-blue. But that’s a moot point. Because now we’ve made an arab-israeli-american love triangle, and these triangles are perpetuated through the ages, with no true end.

This was all brought on by the news of another American’s death in the hands of terrorists. Suddenly, that mattered a lot to me, because I have been ostriching this whole thing, seeing as how my vote didn’t count in the last election, and the unelected president is now in office tearing down walls left and right like an overgrown toddler.

This is all coming to a head again, like my life did after 9/11/2001. I was stung by the first beheading, like you are when you find out a baby was bludgeoned to death by some wifebeating no-word-is-strong-enough person. Or knowing that millions of loving petss are destroyed every day in animal shelters in this country because people aren’t fucking responsible with their pet ownership. These ugly things, and I have to stop talking about them, are things I ostrich, I avoid. I was hit hard the first time I found out about any of these things, when I realized the severity of these horrors, but just as I can’t stop the war in Iraq, I can’t stop some asshole from dropping a perfectly good orange kitten off at the pound because he’s inconvenient. I can’t stop the violence, I can’t change the world. But I also can’t perpetuate it, and I can’t live every day with it in my face. Suicide lies therein.

So the fact that teachers in some schools actually SHOWED the beheading video to their classes makes me angry, and scared for mankind in general. You can v-chip television, block cable porn, refuse to let your kids hang out with the wrong crowd, curfew them, discipline them, love them and guide them, but you can’t stop some idiot in the public schools from showing your child a video of death. Real death. Not pretty made-for-TV death. Check this out, in case that link stops working:

Two Northwest High School teachers were suspended Monday after they showed students the videotaped beheading of American hostage Nick Berg.

Officials with the school, located in far north Fort Worth near the Texas Motor Speedway, are investigating why the teachers showed the tape to three classes. Officials said one teacher stopped the tape before the beheading of Berg occurred, [why even show it then?] but the other showed the complete video. [!!!!!!]

Students said another student downloaded the video from the Internet and brought it to school on a disk. The teachers then let students watch the execution as part of a history lesson. [A history lesson. I am going to homeschool my children.]

“They said, ‘it was inappropriate to show on the big screen, so if you want to watch it you could watch it on my personal computer,'” student Pamela Harris said. [Why is it inappropriate to show it on the big screen but not the little one? Because it’s school property? Well, they’re on school property when they showed the fucking thing.]

Northwest ISD superintendent Keith Sockwell confirmed that two teachers, over a total of three class periods on Friday and Monday, allowed students to view the video.

Sockwell said his initial reaction was disbelief.

“This is something I think was poor judgment,” Sockwell. “I was very disappointed that we have teachers that would allow this to be shown in the classroom.”

Parents Mark and Jeanette Wood said they were grateful their daughter had left the classroom before the video was shown.

“It should not have taken place in a school room … I don’t know what the value of that education is,” said Mark Wood. “Every one of them should be dismissed, no excuses, no ploys … tell us the truth, deal with the action, be accountable and be responsible.”

“(To take) gruesome, sickening, inhumane acts and put that in front of the children – that’s not the way you teach them,” Jeanette Wood said.

Harris and her mother defended the teachers.

“Some kids chose not to watch it, and that was fine, he didn’t show everybody – the computer was (facing) the wall,” Harris said. “Yeah, it was bad and it made me really angry about what goes on over there, but this is history.”

“They’re both good teachers,” her mother said.

Counselors will be made available for students who saw the video. The teachers, who were not named, have been placed on administrative leave with pay.

I’m glad most of the parents were pissed about this. I saw on other sources that these kids (because they are so wise at 18 years of age) should be allowed to watch the video:

Erin Bennici, 18, said she watched the video in her health, science and technology class. She said she and her classmates were mature enough to handle the material. Students in the class often discussed the war and also looked at pictures of Iraqi prisoners being abused, she said. [ !!!! I never ever would condone having my children look at pictures of prisoner abuse. College students can look, sure, they’re adults and paying for their own education. It’s different than state-sponsored violence-watching. Like they’re not already desensitized enough. And people wonder why their fucking kids think it’s no biggie to off someone…]

“It’s disappointing to see this happen to our teacher,” Bennici said. “She’s a really good teacher, and she’s always pushing us and motivating us.” [To watch videos of death and mutilation.]

“It’s part of what’s going on, and it’s a fact of life,” she said. “It did happen.”

Just because it happened doesn’t mean it needs to be in a high school. God, people. Please.