What I Want My Congressman to Do

Congressman Rogers,

I do not doubt that you are doing what you believe is best for our district, Michigan’s 8th. Though I’m sure you know I disagree with you on a lot of the positions you take with regards to social issues and the War in Iraq, I’m not going to give you a hard time here about those things you’ve done that I disagree with. I’m going to take the time here to tell you what I want you to do. So here goes.

Here’s what I want you and the rest of the U.S. Congress to do, Mike.

I want you to cut off the money to fund this bungled, ill-conceived, ill-planned war in Iraq that has spawned a Civil War that our men and women in uniform (and contractors) can not stop. That the President and Vice-President misled this country of ours into this war is criminal. Unfortunately for our men and women in uniform, the only people who can bring peace to Iraq are the Iraqi people themselves. If they would rather fight with guns instead of ballots, then that’s their horrific choice. It is not worth one U.S. soldier’s life to referee this war. Besides, thanks to this diversion, Al Qaeda is now as strong as ever.

I want you to hold Harriet Miers in contempt for refusing to testify before Congress about the U.S. Attorney firings. Dean worked for Nixon, but Nixon didn’t tell him to ignore Congress. Miers seems to think she’s supposed to support Bush over the Constitution. When you were an FBI agent, how did you react toward people who ignored subpoenas on cases you investigated?

I want you to call for Alberto Gonzalez to step down as Attorney General. He’s either a liar or incompetent or both. He tells Congress that the FBI hasn’t abused people’s civil rights under the Patriot Act, when, only days before, he’d received reports informing him that the FBI had in fact violated laws protecting civil liberties and privacy. That’s called perjury. A previous Congress attempted to impeach a President over lying about a blowjob. Covering up abuses of citizen rights strikes me as a higher order of crime.

I want you to work to close Guantanamo Bay and try those detainees for whatever crimes they have committed, following due process. John Walker Lindh got 20 years in the civilian court. Why is our own justice system, or the International criminal Court, not good enough?

I want you to work to stop the CIA’s rendition program. That the United States of America, the country that’s supposed to be the standard-bearer of freedom and democracy, is kidnapping people off streets and taking them to undisclosed locations around the world for interrogation and torture is a travesty. It is a method used by the likes of Pinochet and the Junta of Argentina’s Dirty War. Those methods don’t preserve freedom and democracy. They suppress it.

I want you to shut down Bush’s NSA spying program (the one that ignores the FISA) because it is unconstitutional.

I want you to tell Speaker Pelosi that Impeachment should be ON the table. Ridiculous, you say? Purely political, you say? It’s not ridiculous when President George W. Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney show contempt for the Constitution of the United States. Just because it’s political doesn’t mean it’s unjust. You are a politician. Every elected official in this country is a politician.

Most importantly, as an FBI agent you swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States. As a member of Congress, you took a similar oath. Not to your party. Not to the President. Not to Congress. Not to the military. Not an oath to anyone or anything else. Just the Constitution: the contract, that brilliant document, that binds every citizen of this country together with the three branches of our government.

We have a President and Vice-President who at best view the Legislative branch with contempt, as merely a bank with unlimited funds, and as a rubber stamp for their ideas.

The two of them must be kept in check so that their successors don’t even get the chance to abuse the power of the Executive Branch. Do you really want a Democrat in the White House acting this way? Even as a Democrat myself, I don’t.

I know this is a lot. But our country has been violated repeatedly by a President and Vice-President who have little regard for the concepts of accountability and responsibility. You weren’t elected to make easy decisions. You were elected to serve the people and uphold the Constitution of the United States of America.

[Cross-posted on Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.]

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