My friends know there is little about this administration’s actions that I cheer, but sometimes you just have to put politics aside and look at situations and trends from a neutral position if you want the correct perspective. So here goes.
The Right in the country is up in arms over the perceived power grab and loss of freedoms that have been thrust upon the Nation. The Defense Authorization bill and the National Defense Resources Preparedness issues are the latest that come to mind. It is understandable that these can be viewed as power grabs by a President that has promised ‘fundamental change’, and has been secretive about much of his actions. Trust me, I get it.
Let me play devil’s advocate with my Conservative friends to explain how I am looking at the situation.
Let me throw a few more issues into the pot here; DHS places order for 450 million rounds of .40 caliber ammunition plus 150 million rounds of .223 ammo for their officers for the next 5 yr period; patrol boats with significant armaments have been deployed to patrol the Rio Grand; our military’s new liaison with Mexico has been involved with Special Forces fighting Islamic terror since the 80′s; local sheriff departments throughout the country have increased their emergency preparedness training in the past six months (based upon conversations with sources from multiple states that indicate a coordinated message).
The Defense Authorization Act was passed in Republican controlled house and by an overwhelming majority in the Senate; a true bipartisan effort. The National Defense Resources Executive Order recently signed by the President updates and strengthens the powers of governmental agencies to both prepare and act in a national emergency; nothing new really except for updates consistent with better understanding of current threats.
While others see a plot to strip of the citizens of liberties, I ask the question: what is the Administration and Congress preparing for?
There is a trend showing both awareness and preparedness that cannot be ignored. Last week, Representative Peter King held a hearing on the threat to the Nation posed by Iranian backed Hezbollah already operating in our country. While the Democrats on the committee worked to downplay the threat, they lacked the passionate objections voiced last year when King held hearing about radical Islam in America; something has changed.
While it is easy in a political season to heap criticism upon an incumbent president, it obscures any understanding of important events and trends. From my perspective, the government is reaching a consensus that the threat of terrorism has not only increased, but is is more widespread and serious than previously anticipated. The government as a whole is frantically playing catch up.
For too long, and through multiple administrations, we have ignore our Southern border and ignored warnings about the infiltration of terrorists using the cartels to assist in their transit. Political correctness has hampered our efforts to bring awareness to the issue since it was framed as an immigration issue only; step out of line with the PC crowd and you were labeled a racist, point out the terror link and you were labeled an Islamaphobe or fear-monger.
I ask my Conservative friends to take a fresh look at some of the news when put into this context. Which scenario fits better? The President is on an all out power grab, or the President, Congress, and the military are preparing for a threat to our homeland that is finally being taken seriously by all. There is a clear message that is being sent if we put Left/Right politics aside and listen.
by Jack Woodward 3/30/12