The Bush Pledge

I’m kind of late in the day with this, since both Josh Marshall and Kos posted stories on it this morning. I’m talking about the story of the Bush rally in which the 2000 or so people who were there were asked to stand, raise their hands and recite the following in unison: <p.

“I care about freedom and liberty. I care about my family. I care about my country. Because I care I promise to work hard to re-elect George W. Bush president of the United States.”

To be perfectly honest about this, I find the idea of 2000 people standing up and raising their arms in the air and reciting this a whole lot scarier than Osama bin Laden. This is not America, at least, not the America that Jefferson envisioned. This is the real threat we face, a cult of personality that wants to subsume everything else within it, including our liberty and our freedom, especially our freedom to dissent and to criticize our government. I think this story needs more circulation, and I hope it gets out there before the polls open Tuesday morning. I don’t want to face a future where every day we all have to stand up and raise one arm in the air and pledge some oath of loyalty to a person, as if that person was our freedom and our liberty.

Mr. Bush, you do not understand democracy and you do not understand our constitution. Anyone who requires an oath of loyalty to him personally is wholly unfit to be the leader of this country.