2000: When Life was Simple
2001: Sleeping Sickness
2002: Making the Commitment
2003: Revenge, Passion, Lust, Greed and Love
2004: Welcome to My Desk
2005: Working for Peanuts
2006: It Sneaks Up on You
2007: Progress Milestones
IN MY OPINION
Books Read in 2008
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1 June 2008
You know what's very weird? Getting involved in the HBO movie, "Recount" (excellent behind-the-scenes of the Gore v. Bush case in Florida), then turning it off and realizing you are watching the ending bits of the delegate debate, Clinton v. Obama. I'd say that it was fantasy meeting reality, but since the movie was quasi reality too, albeit with actors playing the real people, I'm not sure what to call it.
Watching "Recount" is sort of like watching "JFK" or "Titanic" or any of the historical reenactments. You know how it all ends before you ever enter the theatre or turn on the video, but you get so caught up in the action that you hope that maybe this time Lee Harvey Oswald will miss, or they manage to steer past the iceburg, or the chads won't hang.
It was particularly depressing because of how close Gore came to winning the presidency, and how frustrating it was seeing all the brick walls that were put up which prevented an accurate count from being made. We will never know. How many lives would have been saved with a different administration in the White House.
This comes on the heels of an extremely moving display we saw in Sacramento earlier this week. I really hoped to get back to spend more time.
The Sacramento Coalition to End the War got permission to put little flags on display along the Capitol Mall. Check the Photo of the Day to get a feeling for the size of the area of the display (though the arial photo was not taken during the display). You'll see that there are seven long blocks leading from left to right, the far right being the capitol building. Roughly three acres worth of flags.
At the corner of each block is a segment of red flags, and the remainder of the block is filled with white flags.
The red flags each represent one American who has been killed in Iraq. The white flags each represent at least five Iraqi civilians killed since the occupation of Iraq began in 2003. Civilians. You know...men, women and children who are non-combatants.
At least 655,000 Iraqi civilians and 4,080 Americans as of Memorial day.
I had a very visceral reaction to seeing the display. It did strange things to my stomach to look at the representation and see innocent civilians represented by those white flags.
Collateral damage, I guess they are called. Not mothers protecting babies. Not little children playing in the street. Not youngsters screaming in terror before their lives are ended. Not men rushing home from work trying to protect their families from incoming bombs, from the attack of soldiers.
I look at the flags, and I watch "Recount," and I wonder what sort of world we would be living in now if the Supreme Court had not ended the process whereby we would know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, who really won the election.
If Gore had actually won, would there be a flag display on the Capitol Mall this weekend?
"The display is a great representation of the deaths on both sides," said Cres Vellucci, spokesman for Veterans for Peace in Sacramento. "This is a very fair and non-partisan way to dramatize the human cost of the war to the people of Iraq and the U.S."
No matter how you feel about our occupation of Iraq, this display is
PHOTO OF THE DAY
MILES TO NOWHERE: 46 miles