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March of Folly

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We talk of taking back our country.
But you can't take back
what was never really yours.
And of working to fix the system.
But what is left of the "system" worth salvaging?

We lay claim to freedom and to equality.
Government by and for the people,
fodder of war,
commodities of industry,
for the privileged class
to plunder and squander
for their profit and amusement.

Pathetic delusions of democracy
where the will of the many
lay trampled beneath the avarice
and unbridled power of the few.

Can you understand now
why the powerless, oppressed, and disenfranchised
strap explosives to their bodies
and seek release and redemption
in martyrdom and bloody slaughter?

Or maybe you believe,
that violence is never the answer,
that patience is a virtue
and right the only weapon
against gun, and tank, and drone.

Or maybe you believe
they ought follow our example.
First to avail themselves
of courts and legislatures,
and then, when all else fails
take to the streets
in quiet protest and dissent,
under the watchful eye of occupiers
or Homeland Security thugs,
tear gas and cannon at the ready,
to parade politely and nonviolently,
through the capitals of power,
appealing to corrupted consciences
with signs of witty sayings,
chanting hackneyed slogans
from the barbed wire confines of free speech pens,
pigs fattened by moral hubris
principles strapped to their bodies
compliantly herded for the slaughter
while pretending to make a difference.
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Camillo "Mac" Bica, Ph.D., is a professor of philosophy at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, a long-time activist for peace and justice, a member of the Vietnam Veterans Against the War, and the coordinator of the Long Island Chapter of Veterans for Peace. His books include "Beyond PTSD: The Moral (more...)

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