The time for playing political games is over. You owe your constituents an effort to bring about the two legitimate debates the American people have not had during the Bush administration:
- What are the limits of presidential authority under the currently approved 2002 resolution for war?, and
- What is the appropriate use of preemptive military force in the name of national security?
Previous congressional sessions approved an overly broad war resolution with little guidance for the courts and the public concerning the views of Congress, and with hindsight, there clearly is a difference of opinion regarding the breadth of approval for military conduct. This country deserves to have the question of executive branch authority addressed, especially in light of this administration’s expansion of executive branch powers for the purpose of protecting national security.
We should all be honest, bringing the troops home, is a nice political statement but far from the true question facing this country’s leadership. We are but one event, from having to address the legitimate question of using preemptive force. In the period after Sept 2001, we were all full of emotion and shock at the new reality facing this country. However, time has brought about the possibility to enter a rational debate not previously viable.
Preemptive force is not a feasible strategy of protection, in my opinion. At its’ essence preemptive force can only be rationalized for those humans for whom there is no respect of life. It is a strategy destined to isolate the country as many others realize they are but one spurious suspicion from being next on the hit list. I personally have a great difficulty with the concept, but can certainly understand others may disagree (I note at this point that even death penalty proponents do not use a preemptive rationalization).
For me, one of the great benefits of the system checks and balances in the United States Constitution is that no tyrant can exist; we are coming far to close to tyranny in the name of protecting innocent Americans. I implore you, use your position and status to encourage debate on these two issues, for if the country really believes the position of the current administration, and then ask the country for the sacrifices necessary to make the strategy succeed. Moreover, if the position of the current administration is not supported, revoke the authorization for war, and deal harshly with those who defy the checks and balance which make this country great.