Tuesday, February 06, 2007
  Republican Presidents
A friend was doing some research on Lincoln and came up with these following items:

Lincoln was perhaps one of the most hated presidents in history. During his presidency, Lincoln appropriated himself unparalleled power. He suspended the writ of habeas corpus, spent money without congressional authorization, imprisoned thousands of suspected Confederate sympathizers without trial and routinely ignored the will of the people. One of the best examples of this was during 1861 when he knew he needed to keep the border state of Maryland in the union. Maryland's legislature was getting ready to vote for secession, so he ordered the entire legislature arrested and imprisoned to avoid the vote and keep Maryland in the Union. He knew he was ignoring the Constitution, but stood by his decisions, claiming, “ I felt that measures, otherwise unconstitutional, might become lawful by becoming indispensable to preserve the Constitution through the preservation of the nation. Right or wrong, I assumed this ground and now avow it.”

Deja vu, anyone?

What is it with these Republican Presidents and suspending basic civil rights and liberties?

I tend to think it was a good thing that the country remained united, but surely it could have been accomplished without such drastic measures.

I tend to think the war on terror is something we need to win (ie terror tactics need to be disavowed by all groups.) But I think our current way of going about that is creating a ground swell of support for terror tactics, not to mention that we're killing far more people than the terrorists ever did.

This is largely because we've misdefined the targets of the war on terror as being a group of people rather than a moral precept (it's a lot easier to kill people than to convince them their thinking is wrong headed...). To win the war on terror, we need to see a triumph of humanist thinking (ie every human life is precious and equally valuable), and a restoration of good will towards all. Starting with us. Our foriegn policy since WWII has spread death, poverty and corruption far more often than it has spread justice, prosperity, and improved living conditions. Until we realize that national security is attained by moral superiority, generosity, and negotiation rather than domination, military, political, or economic, we are going to continue losing the war on terror.
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Progressive Muslim, feminist, mom, writer, mystic, lover of the universe and Doug Schmidt, cellist, theologian and imam.

What I'm reading now

Cane River
An interesting exploration of the gradual whiting of a family through slavery to modern days.

To see an archive of all the books I've read (well the ones I've read and review since I started the blog) with comments, please click here

Causes Worth Supporting

This is just a short list -- a few of my favorites.

English Language Islamic Fiction. We need more of it. Lots more.
Pay a Teacher's Salary in Afghanistan. The Hunger site actually has a lot of worthwhile programs. You can find them all here .
Muslims for Progressive Values. My organization. We can always use donations, of time or money!
Human Rights Campaign for the glbt community
National Religious Campaign Against Torture
The ACLU I'm a card carrying member. Hope you'll become one too.
MoveOn.org. The organization that has done the most, as far as I can tell, to pull the countries progressive side together.
Network of Spiritual Progressives. Working to reclaim religion and morality for the religious left.

Blogs Worth Reading

Wanda Campbell also known as Nochipa A very gifted poet and a gentle, compassionate soul. Nochipa and I are on the same page on sooooo many things
Writeous Sister Aminah Hernandez, she's got some excellent latino pieces and always has good writing info on her blog.
Sister Scorpion aka Leila Montour - Leila is a fount of energy, quirky humor, and bad attitude. She's also a talented poet.
Muhajabah Very interesting commentary here. I don't always agree with her, but her pieces are always thought-provoking.
Georgie Dowdell Georgie is a great writer and a good friend.
Louise Marley Another great writer. I think Louise is one of the best sf writers exploring faith themes.
Ink in My Coffee Devon Ellington (who has numerous aliases) who is also the editor of Circadian Poems. A truly inspiring woman with a seemingly endless supply of energy.
Ethnically Incorrect With a name like that, isn't a given I'm going to enjoy this writer?
Freedom from the Mundane Colin Galbraith, another excellent writer, from Scotland.
The Scruffy Dog Review This is a new e-zine with an ecclectic mix of fiction, poetry, and non-fic, some really enjoyable pieces here.
Ramblings of a Suburban Soccer Mom Lara, another gentle soul, very thoughtful.
Circadian Poems A journal of poetry, new stuff up all the time.
Ye Olde Inkwell Michelle writes romance and is one of my writing buddies.
Muhammad Michael Knight The original punk Muslim writer. Like him or love him, Mike is always coming up with the unexpected.

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