Election 2014: The Moment of Truth for the US Antiwar Movement?

by Joe Scarry

Can we envision a circumstance in which members of Congress lose their seats because of their failures on issues of war and peace?

If the crisis created by Barack Obama’s threat to attack Syria has taught us anything, it is the urgency of having a Congress that controls the power to go to war, and absolute necessity that Congress refuses to go to war without the consent of the people.

I got a close-up of this as I observed the impact of constituent communications on members of the Illinois congressional delegation. It was a real wake-up call for me: there are members of Congress who understand that they represent their constituents, and members who don’t.

2014 is a midterm election year. There will be an election for every seat in the House of Representatives. So again I ask: Can we envision a circumstance in which members of Congress lose their seats because of their failures on issues of war and peace?

As someone who has been working day after day to raise the issue of drone warfare, and has experienced frustration over how difficult it is to get the public to pay attention to the problem, I was startled by how engaged and effective the general public was over the threat of war against Syria.“We can make ourselves heard!” I realized.

Isn’t now a moment when, instead of falling back into our existing habits of trying to change America’s war-making ways, we should put our recent experience under a microscope? And ask what we can learn from this experience? Can we make 2014 the year that we sort the wheat from the chaff in Congress? And get the control over war and peace back into our own hands?

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2 Responses to Election 2014: The Moment of Truth for the US Antiwar Movement?

  1. ohchaz says:

    Thanks to Congress for passing Homeland Security and The Patriot Act without caution as to how much power they were extending to the President or possibly not caring, they have put into jeopardy our Democracy. The President’s is to preside over the running of the Country. Sneaky agenda memos and backdoor policy changes should be illegal. The President ,Congress and The Supreme Court are our employees. Any issue that brings about a major change or war( unless declared on us) should be dealt with by simple referendum. We have been bamboozled by our incompetent leaders for over a century.
    The Government is so corrupt that it is beyond help. At present the corporatocracy they have formed is totally dislocated from the principles of; government of the people, by the people and for the people. Greed is their only motivator. Amnesty to illegal aliens and gun control are not what we need on the agenda with millions of citizens jobless and hopeless. they should have been stimulating the economy as their prime business since 1971. They allowed the unhampered out sourcing of our jobs. They are all guilty of breach of promise because not one of them is living up to their oaths of office. TH=he only way we can straighten out this mess is do exactly what President Jefferson suggested in The Declaration of Independence; when the Government no longer serves the people it is incumbent upon us to get rid of it and form a better one. No pun intended, our Congress couldn’t run a one seat outhouse unless the power lobbies tell them what to do. Can we really expect the chickens to watch over the fox?

  2. I think that we can do without ANY of the present member of the house, senate, white house, or supreme court. There are 324 million of use and 546 of them. Surely we can replace them all with ordinary Americans of integrity from among our own ranks,. Politics is not rocket science, it is the art of living … with each other. It is only complicated by the gyrations required to say one thing and do another. Unify the actions and the discourse.

    There may be a handful of decent people in the House … Barbara Boxer comes to mind … but she’s put in her time, give the lady a break. It is of the utmost importance to choose ordinary Americans to represent us. Neither Demoblicans nor Republicrats need apply.

    There are 175,000 precincts of around 2000 American voters each. We need to get together and choose our representatives from among ourselves and send them to Washington to unify discourse and action, to tear down the phony stageset, and to rebuild representative democracy in the USA.

    It will take some creativity to slough the donkey/elephant skin … but making the decision to do so is really the only hard part, the necessary and sufficitn condition for its accomplishment.

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