Andrew Rosenthal writes about the absence of political dissent in the New York Times. When I cross the quad of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign I am reminded of how there is no serious, organized, national opposition to the invasion and occupation of Iraq. Perhaps there are a few conversations amongst like-minded friends here and there, but locally the UIUC campus is like what Rosenthal describes. The local AWARE (anti-war, anti-racism effort) group protests regularly, but their efforts aren’t replicated across the country. It’s even hard to see anti-war footage on anti-war news reports (like Democracy Now!) that isn’t a repeat of old footage.
I wonder why that is, and I recall that the anti-war protests took a vacation to stump for pro-war candidate Sen. John Kerry in the last presidential election. The voters were told that his method to manage the war was better than the current war management under Pres. George W. Bush. So if Kerry voters won, they’d get a pro-war president. If Kerry voters lost, they’d be stuck with a pro-war president. With this kind of dichotomy, what do we have to look forward to?
Let’s hope the so-called anti-war Left doesn’t take another vacation to celebrate the achievements of the Democratic party—pro-war Sen. Hillary Clinton (who will probably win reelection because she has more money to spend than her anti-war challenger and plenty of media support from Time Warner’s NY1 in New York). It’s easy for anti-war supporters to say they won’t stump for any pro-war candidates when there are no candidates to consider and no election around the corner for most people’s radar (sadly, most Americans don’t vote in mid-term elections). We’ll see what happens when a presidential election draws near. I remember what happened last time (Wikipedia).