Having read this, I have a renewed fear of the world. Hanging out with some true GenX’ers on Saturday, I asked about their nuclear-fearful childhood, as my own childhood was remarkably fear free – I was a child of glasnost, the fall of the berlin wall, handshakes on Mir, the seeming trouncing of Iraq by the ‘Allied Forces’ (as though as I recall, the Gulf War was the first time I questioned what was happening. All of these events seemed like positive moves towards peace.
Now, I definitely exist with a low-level anxiety about the state of the world. Some I think comes from education, learning more about what we’ve done on an economic & environmental scale. Some is due to the fear-mongering of our news networks, who know that paranoia sells better than joy. Alot is due to the current state of America. It probably started a couple of years ago, when the inherent contradictions & tensions that make up America began to become apparent to myself. They were redoubled with the election of Duby. It has been much worse as I’ve watched how the US has handled their response to last September 11th. The attack was bad, but it was specific, abstracted from experience and not personally affecting. The massive, sweeping changes to American politics has been personally affecting. While I laugh outwardly at Rumsfeld’s ‘I don’t what, I don’t know when, I don’t know where, but sometime, something bad is going to happen’ terror-alert warnings all contribute to stress (even though it is about America, and I don’t think Canada is a particularly likely or worthwhile target). The US’ response, the Afghani incursions, the possible war on Iraq (for reasons unclear to pretty much everyone, I think),
Everything I ever learned about American politics and constitution, including what I learned playing ‘Civilization’ said that indeed, Congress did have to allow the president to wage war. Now, having already granted Bush unheardof economic powers (related to free trade agreements), it appears that the Bush administration is lining itself up to pursue any foreign policy it wants, without checks from Congress. And this, more than curbing civil rights, more than war on an abstract noun, more tha horrific trade policies, makes me fearful. I do realize that they’re stating this because of resolutions passed at the end of the Gulf war, but now that the US Congress has approved the War on Terrorism, could not virtually anything the US administration wished to do be placed under that arm, and the US could go in, under the same resolution? It’s a terrifying thought, given the hawks in the current administration.