Cindy Sheehan: Impeachment Proceedings
By Cindy Sheehan
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the General Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
- Preamble to the Constitution of the United States of America
There are many important issues facing our nation and the 110th Congress. Minimum wage increases and universal health care are long past due.I certainly appreciate the stirrings about bringing our troops home from Iraq within 3 or 4 months, too! After all, sic more troops were killed yesterday while our politicoes are playing footsies with each other! We thought that Nov. 7th was a day to celebrate! When the last of our brave young people come limping home to their relieved families that will be a joy-filled and historic day.
I believe, though, that those same troops and others who have fought so bravely, died so needlessly, and have been wounded for life deserve justice for what the Bush regime has put them through. I believe that this country and the world deserve justice for the raping and pillaging by the pirates who have stolen our liberties and inflicted torture and other pains and hardships upon the world. I believe that impeachment proceedings are the most important issue that the 110th Congress should put on OUR table.
Since I have written open letters to George and Reps Pelosi and Conyers, I have had almost overwhelming support for the ideas, but there are also some legitimate concerns that need to be addressed.
First of all, many people believe that impeachment proceedings will be seen as "political" revenge for what the Republicans have done to the Democrats for the last 12 years or revenge for the impeachment of Bill Clinton. Impeachment is not a political tool as used by the Republican Congress, but it is a Constitutional remedy for elected or appointed officials who are abusing their powers. If George has not abused his powers as president and commander in chief, then no president in history has. I will not detail his high crimes and misdemeanor and crimes against peace and humanity, because all of his illicit activities have already been well documented. Justice should not be a partisan issue and if Congress took their oath to the Constitution as seriously as they take their allegiance to the special interests and to partisan politicking, George would have already been impeached.
Secondly, many people are fearful that impeachment proceedings will bog down Congress. Elizabeth Holtzman who was a Representative from New York and sat on the investigative committee that recommended impeachment articles be charged against Richard Nixon said, last weekend at our impeachment forum in Philadelphia's Constitutional Hall, that this kind of reasoning doesn't give Congress enough credit. Ms. Holtzman said that Congress is able to "walk and chew gum" at the same time. I will have to take her word for it, since she is the reasoned voice of experience.
Lastly, people are concerned that holding George accountable will further divide a country already damaged and split by the "Uniter." This is a legitimate concern, but our country healed completely after the Nixon debacle, and we will heal again. I would like to also give us Americans the credit that we deserve. We have proven over and over again that we are very resilient and strong enough to withstand a quest for accountability.
Recent polls have shown that most Americans want proceedings instituted against BushCo. The newly elected Congressional leadership will not institute these proceedings unless the will of the people is shown. Many members of the Congresses, in both parties, that have been seated since BushCo came to power in an illegal electoral coup in 2000, have been willing co-conspirators in the Bush crimes against everything and it is up to the will of the American people to correct the course that is robbing the Blessings of Liberty from all of us and from our posterity. As the preamble states, it is our Constitution, as well as it is theirs, and we need to reclaim our country and our humanity before it is lost to us forever.
Bringing Articles of Impeachment against BushCo will not only bring resolution and justice to our nation and the world, but if this regime is made to be held accountable for their crimes and abuses of power, then future administrations may be slower to commit such blatant and belligerent crimes and the world will be a safer and more peaceful place. But there is an overriding reason for these proceedings to be instituted as soon as possible: A president is not above the law, or the law. A president is an elected official who has a duty to obey, carry out and protect the laws of our land, not break them as if he were a dictator of a banana republic, not leader of a once great nation. We need to restore our greatness and our credibility to a world that despises us for allowing BushCo free rein to commit their aggressions against the world.
By attaining this justice that our world so desperately needs, we people of compassion and courage cannot bring back the hundreds of thousands of people who have been killed already. We cannot put the buildings back together that the war machine's bombs have destroyed. We cannot make whole the people who have been emotionally and physically wounded by these high crimes and misdemeanors. We cannot put back together the families who have been torn apart by illegal wars. No matter how hard we try, we cannot prevent the pain that has already been caused by BushCo, but by bringing them to justice, we can, and will prevent more needless suffering here at home and abroad for the present and for our posterity.
Our dead, our soldiers, and the people of Iraq are voiceless in the debate on accountability and we must be their voices. The Constitution cannot break out of its glass at the National Archives and sit-in in front of the White House or walk the Halls of Congress to demand that BushCo quit desecrating it and what the US used to stand for. It is up to us, the citizens, to protect humanity and the law of our land. As historian Howard Zinn states in the introduction to Impeach the President, the Case against Bush and Cheney, edited by Dennis Loo and Peter Phillips:
We cannot expect either Republicans or Democrats in Congress to initiate any challenge to the existing order of things. In the history of the nation, serious injustices---slavery, racial segregation, the rights of working people, the condition of women, the war in Vietnam---have only been remedied by powerful social movements that have forced the government to change its policies.
Now we have another such time.
Our very existence as a nation of laws and justice depends on it.
Please visit Impeach for Change to learn about the new and powerful people's movement for accountability. Sign up for an impeachment forum in your area on Human Rights day, December 10th, or organize one locally if there is not one near you. I will be speaking with, among other notable Americans, Elizabeth Holtzman, at the forum in NYC that day.
Please visit Gold Star Families for Peace to learn about our Walk for Change campaign in the Halls of Congress on January 3rd and 4th, 2007. You can join Gold Star Family members in our demand for peace and accountability.
2006 was the year of the Awakening and 2007 will be the year of the Change!
Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Spec. Casey Sheehan who was KIA in the Bush regime's war of terror on 04/04/04. She is the co-founder and president of Gold Star Families for Peace and founder and director of the Camp Casey Peace Institute. Cindy has published three books and the latest is Peace Mom: A Mother's Journey Through Heartache to Activism.