Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

an updated version of the poem, "First they came for..."

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (Through 2005) Donate to DU
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 05:59 PM
Original message
an updated version of the poem, "First they came for..."
This is my own little editorial and purging of bad feelings. Feel free to comment. :)

Election 2004, in my opinion, has become one of the most important elections in the history of the United States. Our country is in dire straights and the stakes are very high. We have two candidates, for the most part, are as different as night and day. Although I am looking toward the day (Kerry), we have to think what if the night (Bush) prevails. What will we do if another election is stolen or corrupted? Will we go silently into that good night?

With the election less than a week away, tensions and apprehension are very high, especially among Democrats. We have seen, and continue to see the dastardly lengths the right-wing, war-machinist Republican Party will go. They scare me! The propaganda is frightening and relentless. It has become so bad that they do not even care when they get caught or how blatant they are! They have created an aura of fear within their own party, but that fear has dripped into our ranks. The fears are different though. The right-wing fear liberal values, such as free speech for all and civil rights. We fear the loss of free speech and civil rights. They fear another attack by crazy A-rabs. We fear another attack by terrorists who are inflamed by our aggressiveness. They fear a global test. We fear no allies left to help us.

All of these feeling and fears made me think of events that led to the horrors of The Holocaust. The rise in unquestioning patriotism, the curtailing of civil liberties, the constant fear of foreigners attacking us, the scapegoating of certain groups of people, and the loss of respect worldwide for the United States. History often repeats itself because people fail to see patterns right in front of their face. Could there ever be an American Holocaust? Could we really see groups of citizens being rounded up and imprisoned, possibly killed? It happened here with the Native Americans of this country, but could it happen in a modern America? Most people say, No! That could never happen here! Many say making a statement like that is ludicrous and paranoid. Maybe, but maybe not.

In Nazi Germany, Pastor Martin Niemoeller wrote a famous poem. It has seen many versions, but the pastor wrote it to reflect the culmination of the Nazi advancement. The following is most widely accepted as the poem he wrote:

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me--
and there was no one left to speak out for me.


He wrote this to reflect that his inactions, and the inactions of others, led to their own undoing. Many people saw what was happening, but never thought it would lead to mass extermination.

How does any of this apply to the current election? From my viewpoint, I have already seen the current administration start stripping basic civil liberties in the name of national security. I have seen shameless propaganda. I have seen the deliberate demonization of people and groups of people. And, I have the word of the current president that he will hold the course! What can we do to prevent the further erosion of our civil liberties? We can vote! We can vote like our lives depend on it! John Kerry is not perfect, nor should he be. However, I believe he will lead our country out of fear, protect us, and allow us to have our civil liberties intact!

If Bush were to remain in power, we could see a new version of Pastor Niemoellers poem. It may go something like this:

First they came for the liberals, by eliminating the right of dissent through free-speech zones that continued to get further and further from the administration and grew smaller and smaller.
But I am no liberal! So, I grumble at the TV and on the Internet.

Then they came for the media, by allowing the Fairness Doctrine to continue to be non-existent and creating a propaganda machine run by the ruling party.
But I am not a member of the media! So, I grumble at the TV and swear off the news.

Then, they get brazen, and come for the gays, by appointing right-wing judges that reinstate the crimes against nature and sodomy laws; thereby, turning consenting adult relationships into criminal acts, costing people their jobs, homes, and lives.
But I am not gay! So, I grumble at the TV and vow to send money to gay rights groups.

Then they come for immigrants, by making asylum impossible and closing off our borders through legislation.
But, I am no immigrant (at least not a first-generation one)! So, I grumble at the TV and vow to join Amnesty International.

Then they come for me and I cant speak up for myself because I am not in a free speech zone. I cant get the news to cover my arrest except as a dissident. I find the laws that the right-wing judges have created, now apply to me through vague and unconstitutional language. I cant even flee the country because the borders are closed!

Leaving me wonderinghow did this happen? I didnt see any signs!


It may not be as poetic as the pastors writing, and it may even seem a little conspiracy oriented, but I believe the signs are already here! The Bush Administration and the right-wing controlled Republican Party have shown their true colors and have even warned us that they will stay the course! They will never be happy until they have complete control. So, before they come for you, VOTE on November 2nd for the one man who will lead us back to the America we once loved, John Kerry!

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
karlrschneider Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:03 PM
Response to Original message
1. I never thought of Niemoeller's piece as a poem, but you've done well
on your "update". Describes creeping Fascism nicely. (uh, 'nicely' doesn't really seem to fit now that I look at it....ah well, fukit)
:D
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
goddess40 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:05 PM
Response to Original message
2. Very good may I use it elsewhere?
I would love to post it on my Weight Watchers thread
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. I would be honored!
If you feel it could make a difference, post away!! I am glad you liked it! :)

Brightest Blessings!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:23 PM
Response to Original message
3. Someone on DU came up with a classic parody:
I'm sure I'm going to mangle it, but it goes something like this:

First they came for the fat loud mouths, and I did not speak;

Then they came for me, but there were no more Libertarians to fight for me.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:42 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. LOL!
It is about the truth!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-28-04 10:09 AM
Response to Reply #6
11. Comme Ci Comme Sa
Libertarians ultimately are concerned with their own individual rights. Whatever good they do for public is incidental. Most of the time, their interests are in opposition to the public good as evidence by things like property rights.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
teryang Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:29 PM
Response to Original message
4. They dare to call it the "Patriot Act"
Heard a moving speech today by a well known trial lawyer. He described how a young attorney was apprehended by police in the courthouse parking lot. Body slammed and cuffed violently with a nine millimeter pointed at his head. When this respected and well know figure tried to intervene on behalf of this "officer of the courts" physical abuse, the bad end of the nine millimeter was pointed at his head. He was told if he tried to interfere one more time, he "would have his fucking head blown off." Turned out it was all a "mistake."

This highly respected trial lawyer told about 60 lawyers in the group that our republic is in a great danger, one that he had not seen in his lifetime. The police are now paramilitary and the citizens are the potential enemy.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BiggJawn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. Amazing!
Edited on Wed Oct-27-04 06:48 PM by BiggJawn
"blow" somebody's "fucking head off" for intervening.

I take it this lawyer made no threatening moves, showed no force?

Of COURSE he didn't

But then, he wasn't dressed in black nylon "Tactical Gear" with a shield, either.

Thus, he was a "PERP"

"The police are now paramilitary and the citizens are the potential enemy."

Yeah, the "Technical Term" is "Perps"

Short for "Perpetrator", IOW, a non-Human. Can be shot usually with impunity. Just claim that you saw a GUN. Here, give him YOUR "throw-away", just in case he didn't have one of his own...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Technowitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:57 PM
Response to Original message
8. very well done, my friend
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
okTracer Donating Member (44 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-04 06:58 PM
Response to Original message
9. FMA
For those who don't get why we are fighting so hard for the gay rights and the right to marriage.

What makes you think they will stop with just the FMA.

They have already made it clear the want to reverse Rowe vs. Wade, and going after affirmative action as well.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-28-04 01:58 AM
Response to Original message
10. self promotional...
kick :)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Thu Dec 18th 2014, 07:51 AM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (Through 2005) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC