|Who Do We Serve God
or Our Government? What is A Life Worth?
By Reverend Dorothy H. Mackey, STAAAMP, Exec. Director
February 24, 2008
As a nation we say that we are a God fearing nation, a nation that honors God, Divinity, Jesus Christ, Allah or Creator as a nation. I continue to hear “our leadership” and our people are a nation of high morale values, honor and integrity. As a Judeo Christian society our founding fathers and the documents they penned touted our sworn allegiance to “God” provides us with unalienable rights that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The laws put in place were penned to uphold the moral fabric of the founding principles and they allowed for our society to operate under civility rather then lawlessness. Many in this nation have said the failing of our society is due largely to taking God out of school prayer, liberals and the moral decay of society as a whole.
In the last several months 3 major global events that reflect significantly on the United States as a moral nation has occurred that is begging the question WHO AND WHAT is Failing Our Nation? These three events have received little or no consideration by United States government leadership and or by United States religious leadership. I find this most amazing. So, I ask you to review the following recent global issues and answer the questions provided.
Kidnapping, Rape and Attempted Murder of Okinawan Children:
Recently, the Okinawan people have once again had to march in mass to demand the reduction of US Marine Corps and US military forces from their island after a 14 year old was raped by a Marine. In 1995, a 12 year old school girl, much like your daughter or neighbor was abducted and gang raped, hog tied with her legs and arms behind her back, bleeding profusely from the rape and left for dead by the side of the road. This 1995 crime focused on US Marine private first class Ledet, 21-years old, Pfc. Rodrico Harp, 22, and Navy Seaman Marcus Gill, 23, a medic. After a mass march of 200,000 Okinawan’s the three US service members were handed over to the Japanese in 1997 as the US military protested their transfer to the Japanese despite the evidence that each of the “alleged” rapists had the girl’s blood on their boxer shorts. In 1998, I met with a contingent of Japanese professionals (doctors and lawyers) in D.C. who had been visiting the Pentagon and the US Marine Corps leadership for 9 years previously, this their 10th year the foreign delegation pleaded with the Marine Corps senior command to help them stop the brutality against their people, and get the US military forces out of their nation. The Marine Corps’ answered was simple and direct “NO, go away and don’t come back, we do not care.” In 1998 the trial of the 3 American GI’s would find them guilty of the rape of a 12 year old child, Harp and Gill were sentenced to seven years of hard labor in a Japanese prison. Ledet — who claimed he changed his mind about the rape but faked having sex with the girl because he feared Gill — was sentenced to 6½ years, they were released in 2003. However, due to a US law that does not recognize foreign convicts of US military, none of these 3 military members were forced to have any sexual predatory paperwork following them, Ledet settled in Georgia, another in Texas, the third’s where a bouts were not known. In 2006 former Marine Kendrick Ledet, 31, of Smyrna, Ga., and Okinawan 1995 rapist of the 12 year of girl raped again! This time Ledet raped and murdered a 22-year-old junior at Kennesaw State University, Georgia, Ms. Lauren Cooper. Ledet and Cooper were former co-workers. It was shown through forensic evidence that several hours after Ms. Cooper’s murder Ledet killed himself. Ms. Cooper’s parents found her body after she had failed to answer her phone. It is well documented in criminal justice studies that rapists will rape again, the repeat likelihood is from 85% to as high as 97%. Why did our nation’s laws betrayed the Cooper’s, and not allow for predator paperwork to follow Ledet or the other two rapists still at large in our nation? How many more women and or children has Ledet, and military like him abusing? Why does the military have the right to put global citizens at risk without accountability? Why isn’t our US Congress acting to change these laws?
The Killings of Northern Illinois University:
In the recent shooting at Northern Illinois University a former grad student and the shooter Mr. Stephen Kazmierczak was a former US Army member. Albeit by all indications Kazmierczak was a troubled boy who was adopted by loving parent, he had spent time in a mental health ward prior to going into the Army. Yet, no one has dared to ask any serious probing questions to the US Army such as: How did Kazmierczak get into the Army with having been institutionalized in a mental health unit? Did the Army do a background check into his past before giving him a security clearance? If so, how good was it IF they didn’t see he’d been institutionalized? How long was Kazmierczak in the military? Depending on how long Kazmierczak was in the military, he would have learned about fire arms, and as all military do, Did Kazmierczak go through combat training learning that his life is worthless and that only his buddies life to the left and right are valued? Did Kazmierczak learn as we as all military that he only is valued IF he is successful in the military? Did Kazmierczak come to believe as all military recruits in the 6-9 week basic training indoctrination that civilians are “worthless, a waste of space and are not of value” how else do you think the government gets US military to be able to kill in war. Did any one know why Mr. Kazmierczak was discharged from the Army? The Army has not disclosed anything but they also have not been fully challenged. Yet today we know for sure: 6 students are dead; Kazmierczak and 5 students who had promising futures in America to include a former US Army soldier and fellow student. According to the Constitution the US military serves the President and the American people? Yet, why is it that it is impossible to get the military held accountable for anything? Who really serves who? Who does the US Military serve our nation? How can it serve a nation of civilians when they as an institution in all military services teaches its members without fail to devalue, dehumanize and hate our own civilians? Is the Truth really that the people of this nation serve the US military providing them un-accountable funding to abuse, steal and misuse? Do America’s really want to know this answer? Because to get this answer they (we must) all be willing to look in the mirror at how we have empowered the military machine to do our dirty work and ignore the consequences!
The US Military Weighs In to Declare Lance Cpl Marie Lauterbach Child (In Womb) Was Not A Viable Life
As a former Commander and Captain I have witnessed many shocking things, this is not so much as an issue of; Do you believe in pro-life or pro-choice, rather then a discussion of what and why has our nation and especially the religious right blindly handed over our beliefs to a bureaucracy? A bureaucracy that changes its position to serve itself from being held accountable; refuting God’s laws, denying our Constitution and Declaration of Independence and our own criminal laws? I witnessed the federal government deny federal dollars to military women overseas who were considering abortions citing taxpayers dollars can’t be used to terminate life which began at conception. This was regardless of the fact IF the woman had become pregnant from immature indiscretions or IF she had become pregnant from a brutal rape. I witnessed as this nation’s religious right; preachers, attorneys and throngs of religious people protested the removal of the feeding tube of Ms. Sabo as her husband and parents fought to determine when and how her life had meaning. Both Governor Bush and President Bush weighed in on the Sabo case noting her life was from God and she had a God given right to be lovingly cared for until her natural death as determined by God. As a woman and a minister, in this nation I have witnessed as Roe v. Wade (abortion case) which notes according to the US Supreme Court that a life of the fetus is viable only after the 1st trimester (3 months) be heatingly contested each year and it be stated without question from the religious right that “they will overturn Roe v. Wade.” The religious right has vehemently protested stem cell research as has President Bush citing life exists in those very cells. So, how is it that the US military and government can say that Lance Corporal Marie Lauterbach child in womb is not life? How is it that the US Marine Corps of Camp LaJune, North Carolina can state that Corporal Luaterbach who was murdered at 8 months pregnant - that her child “did not take a breath at 8 months” and in not taking a breath of air –IS NOT A LIFE? And that this child while still in the womb and in water did not take a breath of air therefore did not constitute a second life murdered? This child was still in the amniotic fluid, well beyond conception, well beyond 3 months and yet no one from any religious organization has said a thing as the US military declares that this child does not count and is not a life! Who are we as a nation? Who and where are the leadership of Our National Religions and How and Why are they remaining quiet as the US government and US military declare Gabriel Lauterbach a non-life? What God do These Religious Leaders Really Serve? The Military God? There is no exception if you serve God, that all life is sacred! Gabriel’s life has been discounted based on bureaucracy, based on the military and this nation’s Commander-in-Chief not wanting to hand over criminal jurisdiction of a civilian life murdered to a civilian court, yet this child counts! The silence of President George Bush and the religious right is stunning, is it because they don’t want to take their focus off of the potential for a Republican Presidency? If they have remained silent for only getting votes their silence has now handed over its morale and God based outrage that they can be bought, that God’s rules and laws can be usurped in America IF the US government and military say it is so. Why isn’t the religious right saying anything, hell, why are any American’s saying anything? The military and this administration through the denial, and ignorance of the murder of Gabriel Lauterbach have gutted their own arguments for any future issue of; Roe v. Wade, stem cell research and that any life is sacred including their own.
Why should these cases make any difference? These cases demonstrate a falseness, a lie and significant inconsistencies that our nations governing documents really have no value and that it is our leadership that has devalued life, our liberty and pursuit of our happiness. These cases even among the religious President, and the morally right demonstrate that their commitment to God is subjective based on who says their beliefs are ok. It is not shocking or surprising that President Bush and the remaining Republican Congress remain silent in the face of the Okinawan and Kazmierczak cases, many past leaderships (Republican and Democrats alike) have refused to weigh in on significant ongoing criminal patterns of behavior within our US military within our boarders and overseas. But, for President Bush and the remaining Republican Congress to remain silent especially in the murder of baby Gabriel Lauterbach demonstrates that their religious convictions can be bought, silenced and muted under selected circumstances is a serious and significant demonstration of who is really failing our nation! Who is running our nation, and using what moral compass? The military, a bureaucracy, global interests, religious interests, what? The answer is very clear in this election year, our elected leaders are failing this nation be they Democrat or Republican. These adults empowered to protect the most vulnerable our failing us all! It appears that that elected leadership; President and Congress which has Constitutional authority and power over the US military, and which is duly empowered by US citizens to reign in and direct the US military has taken their hands, eyes and mind off the wheel of the military might. These 3 cases demonstrates that the military is a freely operating agency whose doctrine can and does change at will, and at whim when something or someone has an agenda which can minimize US and military accountability internationally.
When one child who can’t speak for itself is ignored, is murdered and his life is denied as viable; and his murder is denied, and no one raises an objection, who among you will stand up and speak? When will you speak? Does it matter who the murderer is, or those that collaborate against acknowledging his life? Will you speak up if it is your child? Who will speak for you, IF you will not speak for a defenseless child even if it is your own government that denies his life as valuable? And if you do not speak for him against a government that denies his life, then who will speak for you when and IF you are being murdered by your government?
All of our lives matter, those killed in war, those raped and abused, and those murdered, we all matter!