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[ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ] A minisucle minority? I don't think so, Judith. I used to believe I was the only one, I mean the only one in this whole country, who felt there was a problem with our dealings with Iraq. And family? Sometimes family and friends are the hardest to convince of anything. (and then sometimes you have to reassess who your friends are, don't you?) Don't let it get to you. My kids often think I'm crazy, but then, I've come to have a reputation with them, of being "less than conservative", so we've gotten to a point where we can sort of laugh and joke about it, but then they see how my "conspiracy theories" have a way of proving themselves, and, occasionally, they actually listen to me, now. I've found the best approach for doubters, is to break it to them gently, a little at a time. As Jesus once said: "You can't pour new wine into old bottles, or they will break", pour the wine slowly into those "old bottles", who arent accustomed to that "new flavor", and then they have some time to adapt to the "new wine", and will be inclined to accept it better, and of course, with all of the American public being deluged by the media, with the prevailing propoganda, which explains it all away so conveniently, (and always, according to how the Bush Administration wants the media to spin it), it's difficult for those who rely on those sources, to ignore what they are hearing, day in and day out, it seeps into the very subconscious, it's difficult to get rid of, once it's in the head. (and of course, after "911" it's difficult to get any positive ideas across, about Iraq or any other Middle East nation, at all, with all the "racial profiling" that's going on these days.) Try introducing them to some "alternative" news media, (just once in awhile, don't deluge them or try to force it on them, that will just make them resentful, and not want to listen to you, at all.) There are so, so many sites on the Internet, dealing with this issue, there are many, many people opposed to the current policies. You and I are not the only ones, Judith. The problem is, those of us who feel and think this way, are not gathered together into any one area, or any one group, we are scattered across the country, so sometimes it seems that we, as individuals, are very isolated in our beliefs, but put us all together, and I believe we actually make up a very large number of people, and growing all the time, as other people hear our ideas, and begin to listen to us. But who is counting? Who is gathering those statistics? Certainly not Washington! (unless it is for the FBI's latest "sympathizer list") I didn't realize how many people feel the same as I do, until I got on the Internet. Now I know, I am not alone. You think you have problems? I live in a Navy town! I could be shot at, for expressing my views openly, that's no exaggeration, because people in this town are so pro-military, to the point of being bone-headed about it, so I am very, very careful what I say, to who, and how I put things. It seems that since "911" just about everybody and his neighbor has been flying American flags on their front porches and car antennas, and since I haven't been feeling quite that "patriotic" about the whole situation, (which doesn't mean I don't love my country, I just don't love it's politics) I finally came across a compromise, a "peace sign" bumper sticker, (remember, from the 70's ?) but with the red, white, and blue colors, which states clearly enough, that I dont believe war is the answer to the country's situation, but that doesn't mean I'm against my country, quite the opposite, I'm very concerned for everyone here. (I'm sure, every time I drive down the street, in this military town, all geared for war, there is someone who sees it, and ponders this rather alien concept.) My son recently became a Christian, and his new church immediately began teaching him that all Muslims and Arabs are "of the devil", and they all hate us and want to blow us up. (since Mom has lately been studying Islam, and has Muslim friends, we've had some heated debates on this issue) If you want to see "brainwashed", observe those currently in the American military, they are being taught racism and hatred as a justifiable political stance! Go into any Islam chat room, they are there, calling Arab people "sand niggers", and screaming for the genocide of all Muslims, threatening to murder American citizens, whose religion also happens to be Islam. (These are the people supposedly representing our constitution, which is supposed to include the right to freedom of religion?) They are some of the most foul mouthed, disgusting people you could ever have the misfortune of coming across. I knew Bush was a "warmonger", before he came into office, many people did, and now these are the kind of people Bush is bringing out of the woodwork, and legitimizing. Is this what we really want for our country? I dont believe the majority of decent and sane Americans think so, or they won't, once they see where it's leading. The majority of people in our military, I'm sorry to say, are not of the highest moral standards, their presence in the town where I live has greatly increased the crime rate, the amount of illegal drugs coming into the community, (rapes are commonplace), and it's that way in every city across this nation, (as well as abroad, which may be where some of our problems are stemming from) where the military becomes a major presence in the community. Lets' face it, a majority of people who join the military, do so as a last resort, because they have nothing else going for themselves, they probably couldn't even get a regular job, and so they joined the military, as a last ditch way to make a living. People of good concsience do not agree to go overseas and kill people they dont know, for an hourly wage, because some politician tells them to. Intelligent people know better. They are paid well for their services, and people who would normally end up in penitentiaries or homeless in our society, are instead legitimized and held up for others to exonerate, as "war heros", and they get to drive new cars and move into nice houses, and buy big screen TV's and watch football in style, but if you know these people personally, you know they are no heros, they are the kind you don't want to run into in a dark alley, they are the kind you don't want around your daughters, they are very near to the "bottom of the barrel", of our society. (not saying this applies to all, but it applies to many) So they have no problems with being bred to hate and kill, it's right up their alley, many don't even need a reason, (they were ready to kill someone, anyone, anyway, just for the fun of it,and now, thanks to Bush, they will be paid to do it, instead of being put in jail, where they most likely really belong.) But talk about "conditioning", and "brainwashing", just hear what some of these people have to say! The "justifiable rationalizations" for their blood lust and hatred! This is what "911" has brought about, and this is what the Bush Administration is thriving on! (and I have my own theories about "911" I can tell you!) So dont feel bad about those who say you are "brainwashed", Judith, at least you may be brainwashed, in a "good way". (in truth, it is most likely that they who say this, are the ones who have been truly brainwashed. I often feel the best cure for these people, is to just get them to stop watching the TV, and reading the newspaper, and to urge them to go outside, take a good look around, and start talking to the the people around them, and observing events around them, rather than relying on a TV set, to tell them what "reality" is. Then it becomes much easier to see, who is the "good guy" and who is the "bad guy", with your own eyes, and in the end, that is where the truth is, not on some tv screen!) A favorite saying in my family, that I have found has often been helpful to me, in trying to decide what to believe, and who to follow - "Don't believe nothin you hear, and only half of what you see." Some of the best advice I've every received. _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email email@example.com All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk