Fahrenheit 911: On the virtues of not "moving on" --by Carol Schiffler
Have you ever noticed, when you're being disregarded,
Yesiree, questions will be the downfall of Mom, apple pie, shopping malls and everything that represents the American Way of Life. Questions will be the death of our brave men and women in uniform and little white babies all over the country. Questions are a knife in the heart of Jesus. Our inerrant and infallible commander-in-chief, whom God, Himself, is directing cannot, and will not, be questioned if Move America Forward has anything to say about it because “we are winning the war on terrorism.”
Oh really? Then perhaps the decidedly leftist “Washington Times” is just America-bashing in their June 11 article entitled Terror Reality and Rhetoric. The lead paragraph states that “Claims by President Bush, and embraced by many lawmakers on Capitol Hill, that the United States is winning the war on terror have been shot down by news that the number of terrorist incidents and victims increased sharply in 2003, an important fact buried in today's major newspapers.”
Well that certainly raises a few questions, doesn’t it? Actually, if you look back honestly at America’s very bloody history, you might find yourself wanting to ask quite a few questions. But if you are the kind of American who just wants to “move forward” there just isn’t any time for questioning. And that’s where Michael Moore and Fahrenheit 911 comes in.
You see, Michael Moore is one of those unfortunate souls who do not want to move forward. He has questions about what really happened on September 11, 2001. And worse yet, he has the sheer unmitigated gall to ask his questions on the Silver Screen where tens of thousands of previously unquestioning, Bush-loving, Muslim-hating citizens might be exposed to them and turn into American-bashing leftists, much like the Washington Times. No questions…nothing to see here…move along.
Michael Moore would like to know, for example, about the business relationships between the Bushes and the bin Ladens. He would like to know why the Taliban was entertained in Crawford Texas prior to 9/11. He would like to know why the pResident of the United States just sat there in a room full of human shields…I mean school children…reading a book when the Twin Towers were in flames. He would like to know why the Saudi Royal family was allowed to leave the country on September 11, 2001, when every other plane in the entire United States was grounded.
These are questions that concern me, as a voting, tax paying, God-fearing citizen too. And I have a few more. I would like to understand how, in the remains of a conflagration hellish enough to melt steel and reduce human remains to cinder and ash, it is possible that someone stumbled across the remains of Mohammed Atta’s passport. Who found it and how? And I would like to understand how it is that Islamic fundamentalists, who presumably were such fanatics that they would die for Allah in order to punish the godless heathens, would be spotted in a strip club in Florida just prior to undertaking their most holy of missions. And I would like to understand why Jeb Bush had all the records from the flight school, where these murderous terrorists were trained, destroyed. And I would also like to know why the pResident and the vice-pResident keep insisting that there are ties between Saddam Hussein and al-Queda when it has been indubitably proved that there were none. And I would like to know why the blood of Americans and Iraqis alike continues to be shed for invisible weapons of mass destruction. And I have a lot more questions where those came from. But Move America Forward is not interested in the answers to those questions. It is apparently, far more desirable to keep moving forward, at a frantic pace, without thought or care - without checking first to see if you are stepping on firm ground, in dog crap or on a land mine.
If you ask me, there has been far too much moving on in this country and far too few questions. For example, had we questioned the way we treated the Native Americans in this country’s formative years, would we have been so eager to enslave African Americans? Would we have had lynchings and Jim Crow laws and the Civil War if we had recollected the awful injustices done to the indigenous people who occupied this country long before Christopher Columbus stumbled onto our marshy shores and said, “Say, this looks like a great spot for a Wal-Mart Super Center?” If we had paused for one, lousy moving forward minute to reflect on the My Lai massacre, would we have found ourselves staring at the horrors of Abu Ghraib? If we had taken a minute to recall the shame we felt after World War II, when thousands of innocent Asian Americans were thrown in internment camps, would we have tolerated the disappearance of who knows how many Arab Americans after September 11? And if we had taken a moment to meditate on the reasons that our Founding Fathers took up arms against an oppressive, imperialist government back in 1700’s, would we have been so swift to embrace the PATRIOT Act? I wonder.
There is a time for action and a time for analysis. Generally speaking, the time for analysis precedes the time for action. Unless, of course, you are Move America Forward, a group that would much rather see a thousand ravaged third-world countries than ask one honest question.
Lots of things engage in mindless forward motion. Wheels move forward without reflection or forethought. A clock moves forward without taking time to dissect the minutes that came before. Lemmings don’t spend a whole lot of time pondering the edge of the cliff toward which they are madly rushing, either.
One expects a bit more of sentient human beings. One expects questions, accountability and truth. Whistling past the graveyard does not make you immortal. It is high time we stopped moving forward and took a moment to look back.
Write Regal Cinemas and thank them for showing the film Fahrenheit 911. You can reach them at email@example.com
Visit the 9-11 Visibility Project and find out how you can get involved:
Join the International Fahrenheit 911 campaign:
And most important – go see the movie and take a friend. Oh yes, and don’t forget to ask questions. It’s not just the American thing to do, it’s the human thing to do.
Carol Schiffler firstname.lastname@example.org
June, 20 2004
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