To the Editor:
I am confident you are familiar with the conversion of St. Paul on the road to Damascus that can be found in The Acts of the Apostles, 9:1-19.
The “Road to Damascus” moment is often used as a reference when someone has a revelation on an issue that has a most profound effect on their life. Few, if any, can come close to the event that changed the life of a man who sought to persecute the early Catholic Church to becoming a saint worthy of the title, “Apostle to the Gentiles.”
So, 2,000 years later, President Obama is telling us we are going to Damascus. And it’s not for another vacation, but rather to drop some bombs. The reasoning is that Syrian President Bashar Assad has allegedly used chemical weapons on his own people during Syria’s civil war — a civil war that pits the established regime against members of the same group that murdered over 3,000 people during the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
So let me be clear by saying that the use of chemical weapons is an atrocity and unacceptable. However, as Patrick J. Buchanan points out in his article “Congress Should Veto Obama’s War” at The American Conservative, there are many questions that need to be answered before President Obama goes off acting like the “Wyatt Earp of the global village.” And while those questions should be answered, there is also the fundamental question regarding where in The Constitution does the president, any president, have the authority of a king to wage war and drop bombs on a country that has not attacked us?
Do I expect President Obama, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Kerry, or the neo-cons in the Senate like Senators McCain and Graham to have that “Road to Damascus” moment? No. I don’t. It would be nice, really nice, but I suspect I’d have better luck hitting the jackpot on the first spin on one of the shiny new one armed bandits out at Rocky Gap than these guys to do the right thing.
My prayers and hopes lie with many of you who voted to put and keep Obama in the White House in the first place. You were silent when President Obama resigned the Patriot Act. You were silent when President Obama signed the NDAA which allows for the indefinite detention of Americans. You were silent when the NSA was discovered that it is spying on you and President Obama lied about it. You were silent when it was disclosed that President Obama has a “kill list” and has authorized the killing of Americans without trial. I can go on and on, but the fact is you have remained silent. You have remained silent. You have remained silent. You have remained silent.
If it was not acceptable to you when President Bush had the approval of Congress, why will you remain silent and allow President Obama to take on the role of king and bypass Congress so we can drop bombs? Where is the anti-war left? Where is the “Hell no, we won’t go!” crowd? Where is the “Make love, not war” movement? Should you not give a damn it won’t be off to Vietnam. It will be worse.
So please, you who voted for Barack Obama. Have that “Road to Damascus” moment and stop him from unilaterally acting to go to war. I urge you to call your respective senators and representatives and tell them this issue needs to be debated, discussed and reviewed by Congress.
Richard R. Biancone Jr.