Want to be inspired?

Usually I’m posting about the latest thing that’s pissed me off, but today I wanted to share with you one of the more inspiring things I’ve seen in a long time. (It actually brought several of us in our office to tears.)

It’s MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann’s response to Donald Rumsfeld speech earlier this week, in which he said that those who oppose the administration’s policies suffer from “”moral or intellectual confusion.” Olbermann responded with a beautiful tribute to democracy and the right to dissent. I’m posting some selected quotes, but you really must see it for yourself.

Video here from crooksandliars.com, and text from Keith Olbermann’s blog.

Some highlights:

“Dissent and disagreement with government is the life’s blood of human freedom; and not merely because it is the first roadblock against the kind of tyranny the men Mr. Rumsfeld likes to think of as ‘his’ troops still fight, this very evening, in Iraq.

It is also essential. Because just every once in awhile it is right and the power to which it speaks, is wrong.”

“In what country was Mr. Rumsfeld raised? As a child, of whose heroism did he read? On what side of the battle for freedom did he dream one day to fight? With what country has he confused the United States of America?

The confusion we–as its citizens— must now address, is stark and forbidding.

But variations of it have faced our forefathers, when men like Nixon and McCarthy and Curtis LeMay have darkened our skies and obscured our flag. Note–with hope in your heart — that those earlier Americans always found their way to the light, and we can, too.”

Olbermann concludes with a great quote from Edward R. Murrow:

“‘We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty,’ he said, in 1954. ‘We must remember always that accusation is not proof, and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law.

‘We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men, not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate, and to defend causes that were for the moment unpopular.'”

Sara in Philly

4 thoughts on “Want to be inspired?

  1. Wow. Powerful stuff.

    The Murrow quote especially made me tear up, because *every* point he makes in it is *exactly* what Bush and his people are trying to do to us.

    They *want* us to live in fear. They *want* us to ignore science and instead trust superstition. They *want* us to confuse accusation with proof. And they *want* us to ignore the illegal activites in the name of “our own good.”

    We’ve had discussions with people in the “you must hate this country if you don’t support our President 100%” camp. I try to tell them, by disagreeing with our President, I’m showing *more* love and concern for our country than those who follow blindly into the darkness. I don’t want to see us destroyed, and I do believe that without change, we may need many generations to recover from the harm that’s already been done.

  2. It never really occurred to me before but a good question to ask these people who demand 100% obedience to the President is to ask them if they supported Clinton 100%. I’ll bet that will shut them up real quick.

    Olbermann’s response was awesome.

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