Left Justified: We are losing the war

March 9, 2011

By Stanley Campbell

I think we lost it. Not the war against terror—we never had a chance. And the drug war went up in a puff of smoke.

We are losing the class war because the rich are kicking our butts. That’s the super rich, “I don’t have to pay any more taxes upper class inherited wealth” that has out-classed us poor working stiffs “who better not get sick in this dirty environment.”

The rich have a whole news network to tell us we cannot fight a class war, and then they go and fight against the working class. We’re losing health care, pensions and our educational system. Our governmental services are getting cut while international oilmen have our military fighting to keep their businesses overseas.

If you look at the services that government provides, the rich are still getting what they need, but we are losing what we need.

My friends, let me remind you that all we really have on this earth is time.

After 50 or 100 years, our poor body returns to the dust from whence it came. And how we spend our time determines the quality of our lives. If we spend 40 years in a factory, then shouldn’t we enjoy the few remaining years left on this planet?

Of course, if we were born back in the Dark Ages, our chances of a quality life would’ve been pretty small. But thanks to those who struggled for life, liberty and pursuing happiness, most enjoy a middle-class life full of choices.

The struggle was against royalty and bullies, whose families demanded servitude from their subjects. And the struggle continues. The inherited wealthy don’t want you disturbing their “God-given” right to wealth. If they can buy a governor who will take away your rights to bargain, they will.

And if manufacturers can find slave labor to make their products, they’ll move the factories overseas, even if it means dealing with Chinese communists. When you purchase something at a big-box store, chances are that item was made by a modern-day slave.

We struggled for the right to get paid for overtime after 40 hours, or sick leave from work or go to a doctor and have your time extended by modern medicine. But that is expensive and cuts into the profits of the owners of the factories and sweatshops.

Don’t be envious of state employees who’ve won a good contract, allowing them to retire early and enjoy the last years of their lives. We should extend that gift to everyone else! And everyone else in the world.

Now, some good news…

Let me invite you to a celebration of local heroes who volunteered for the Peace Corps and served overseas. Thursday, March 24, the community will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Peace Corps, and you are welcome to an ethnic supper at Christ United Methodist Church, Alpine and Highcrest, Rockford.

Dinner starts at 6:30 p.m., to be followed by a program at 7 p.m. Dinner is free to all former and present-day Peace Corps volunteers, but call Loren Floto at (815) 624-7622 to reserve a spot. The public is invited to dine for a contribution.

That’s the good news in the midst of all this strife.

Stanley Campbell is executive director of Rockford Urban Ministries and spokesman for Rockford Peace & Justice.

From the March 9-15, 2011, issue

One Comment

  1. John M Stassi

    March 11, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    For years now, I’ve tried and tried to tell you all this and you just haven’t listened:

    Reducing the American worker to the level of the slaves that work in sweatshops in China, Latin America and elsewhere in the third world, all in the name of “free trade”, has been the official policy of almost all of the Republicans and most of the Democrats for nearly 3 decades now.

    One of the most steadfast supporters of this “free trade treason” is our own illustrious, Christian conservative Congressman-for Life, Don Manzullo.

    On January 25, our man Don once again showed his contempt for the working people in his own district by voting AGAINST a resolution that would allow:

    “no spending for any contract entered into by the United States Government with a company that has been determined by the Secretary of Labor to have offshored or outsourced American jobs overseas”.
    http://timbishop.house.gov/index.cfm?sectionid=79&sectiontree=3,79&itemid=1839

    This language would have been added to H Res 38
    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-112hres38eh/pdf/BILLS-112hres38eh.pdf
    which was passed on the same day and resolved to reduce non-security discretionary spending at federal agencies for the remainder of the fiscal year 2011 to FY 2008 levels.
    http://politics.nytimes.com/congress/votes/112/house/1/18

    Speaker Boehner and other Republicans who supported the original text of the resolution touted their devotion to saving American jobs from what Boehner calls Congressional Democrats’ “job-destroying spending spree that has left us with nothing but historic unemployment” and “their job-crushing spending binge on auto-pilot”
    http://www.speaker.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=221041

    Well, despite their professed concern for American jobs, Boehner and his buddies, including our dear Don, voted against adding the above provision to their resolution
    http://politics.nytimes.com/congress/votes/112/house/1/19
    and therefore have indicated that they will continue to allow the federal government to spend taxpayer money on contracts with companies that outsource the American jobs they claim to be concerned with.

    This is what hypocrisy looks like, Stanley, and when it comes to hypocrisy your fellow Christians, Don Manzullo and John Boehner, are veritable masters of deceit.

    It’s hypocrisy like this that makes me hate Jesus, Stanley, to the extent that it is possible to hate a work of fiction.

    Wake up and smell the coffee, brother!

    That imaginary savior you worship has never been anything more than a convenient excuse for war, bigotry and other crimes against innocent people. If we really want justice, Stanley, we must rid our country of the curse of Christianity and other forms of sanctified bigotry.

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