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A Letter to The American Right

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I am an American fighting man. Those words were the start of the soldier's creed. I lived those words for almost 21 years. From 1969 to 1994 with two breaks in service in between, I was a soldier. I saw Vietnam come and go. I was against that war although I still wore my country's uniform. If called to go to Vietnam, I would have gone and performed my duties the best way that I could. I had no problem disagreeing with my nation's politics and serving in my nation's military. I still believed that we had the best government in the world, and that the American people enjoyed freedoms that people in other nations were dying for. I felt blessed that I was born with the freedoms that Jefferson, Washington, Adams and Franklin worked so hard for. I read Common Sense by Thomas Paine. I read The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution and believed that these documents were worth defending with my life. I still do.

I could not serve in the military today. The military of today does not stand for any of these things. The Constitution has been gutted and our own government using the premise of "fighting the war on terror" has usurped the rights of Americans. Like the "Enabling Acts" of the German government when Adolph Hitler came to power, President George W. Bush has signed and supported the adoption of The Patriot Act and the Military Commissions Acts of 2006. Both of these pieces of legislation have chipped away at the basic principles of our constitution. Gone are the laws that protected Americans from Arrest without charges. The Right to a Lawyer. The Right to see the Charges against You. The Right to a Fair Trail by a Jury of your Peers. The Right to See the Evidence against You. The Right to call your own Witnesses. The Right to a Speedy Trail. The right of an Expectation of Privacy in your Home, Business, Automobile or of your Mail. The Right of Free Speech still exists and that is why I am writing this before that too is gone.

People might say that those rights are only taken away from those that the government deems to be a terrorist. This is true but sadly the government may call anyone that it wants to a terrorist and the person charged might never see the light of day. Gone are that person's rights that he or she needs to clear his or her name. The families of these people don't even have to know that the government has taken a family member. The government has taken American citizens and kidnapped them off the streets of America, and put them on a chartered jet to Syria and to other countries that have no laws against torture and had them tortured. These are not "allegations"; they are statements of fact.

The right has always been known for it's unbridled patriotism. They are always pointing to the Constitution and to The Declaration of Independence. This is a time for the people that make up the patriotic right and the patriotic left, to come together in a common cause. That cause is reinstating American rights that were given to us by our founding fathers. This is a time to put partisan politics aside and work together to stop this government of George W. Bush from using the unfortunate events of 9/11 to deprive patriotic and decent Americans of their rights under the Constitution and The Bill of Rights. This is OUR country, whether you are from the left or the right of the political spectrum. I believe that at first people who consider themselves right wing conservatives will dismiss this message. Many people on the right trust their government implicitly. Ask yourselves if you trust ANYONE to deprive you of your rights under the Constitution. Ask yourselves why would anyone want to deprive American citizens of their basic rights?

This is a very important question. It may well determine whether the United States remains a democracy, or like happened in Rome, it becomes a dictatorship. This is a question that needs to be answered today. The next thing we could lose is our Freedom of Speech. Most all of our other rights have been taken. If we can no longer express ourselves, we can no longer fight this madness that has gripped our nation. Left or Right, Republican, Democrat, Independent, Conservative, liberal, or reactionary, we are all Americans and the rights we have lost are OUR rights. We must cast away our differences and tell this administration to reinstate our rights. If the government is so afraid of terrorists, then make all the laws specify non-citizens. The few citizens that might be terrorists we will deal with under the Constitution. These troubling times are no reason to remove American citizen's rights under the Constitution. I didn't give 21 years to my country to have it come to this. Together we can restore the American Constitution because after all is said and done, the Constitution reads "We the People". We are the people.
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Tim Gatto is Ret. US Army and has been writing against the Duopoly for the last decade. He has two books on Amazon, Kimchee Days or Stoned Colds Warriors and Complicity to Contempt.

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