Letter: Failures of President Bush

The Republican campaign motto clearly is: “Be afraid, very afraid … only we can protect you.” And U.S. citizens seem to be sucking this right up.

We are like groundhogs, afraid of our own shadow, ready to give up our civil liberties and all hopes for decent health care, affordable prescriptions, good jobs and viable Social Security in exchange for some bravado to calm our fears.

And that’s all it is – tough talk and a lot of hairy-chested strutting around. But let’s look at the “walk” instead of the talk.

Osama bin Laden and a growing diaspora of al-Qaida are on the loose, continuing to ponder countless terror techniques. Think about it. Can we really guard every grade school, middle school, high school, supermarket, church, etc. in the country? Where there is a will to terrorize, there is a way, and if al-Qaida wants to attack, there is little President Bush, Dick Cheney, or anyone else can do to stop them. Unfortunately, President Bush’s policies have exacerbated the terror problem. We have spent more than 1,000 U.S. lives and more than $200 billion on a war of choice, not necessity, in Iraq.

Our own Sept. 11 commission and Colin Powell on Meet the Press declared absolutely no relationship between the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and Iraq.

In the process of attacking Iraq, we have alienated our allies and given many Muslims further reason to despise and distrust us.

Our actions in Iraq have unleashed new waves of hatred and terror, and it now appears that troop withdrawal is nowhere in sight. Meanwhile our huge and growing national deficit prevents us from spending money on all kinds of domestic programs and security measures that can make us safer at home.

It strikes me as both curious and ironic that U.S. citizens who consider themselves strongly religious would be so afraid of death as to be willing to give politicians carte blanche on foreign and national policies.

I have to laugh when I hear citizens on the news talk about their fears of terrorism. Not that terrorism is funny – it’s just that you and I have a much, much greater chance of getting killed in a car accident, getting shot with a soon-to-be-legal assault weapon, dying from lack of proper health care, (you get the picture), than getting killed by a terrorist.

It’s time for U.S. citizens to quit whimpering like a pack of scared ninnies, and look at the full gamut of important issues that deeply affect the quality of our daily lives.

President Bush has had four years to make this world and our country a better place. He and his colleagues have only succeeded in making it a scarier place. And that’s the way he likes it, because people who are afraid are easily manipulated. It’s time for a change.

Colleen Vojak

graduate student