From the Ranch

From the Ranch

Saturday, April 20, 2013

I Too Have Been to the Mountain...

I am beginning a series of articles of great importance to every American, to every citizen of the world, to every person who values peace, and to every person who strives to live an honorable life.  I will be speaking about a specific miscarriage of justice within the United States Military, which is not the only place where it is found, but where as a nation and a people, we can least tolerate it.  It isn't a new problem, it is as old as mankind, and while all crimes committed by one human being against another are despicable, as any victim of sexual trauma can tell you, this particular crime stands above others because, "all others occur without the body," while this crime is literally an invasion of the human body, and thereby the human soul becomes the most wounded part of the individual.  Where and how can a person be more wounded than by the forced invasion of their body by another?  Always, the perpetrator is of such an evil intent, of such an abusive a nature, that they can violently and forcibly cross the most sacred of lines, which every person instinctively knows to be wrong.  These perpetrators should know the wrath of all the world, lest we encourage others.  Fear of the consequences of being convicted of such an act should be the leading cause of prevention.  Within the military, not enough fear exists, as too many have observed perpetrators who are never called to accountability.
 

All that plagues humankind by means of one or more against one or more individuals, finds its roots in the same soil that this crime grows.  When we as societies and cultures around the world, when we as human beings, look at the problems of war, terrorist threat, oppression by tyrants and dictators, regimes that starve a nation in order to build aggressive military forces, even hunger, every such problem, every such agenda, finds their roots in this common soil.  When we examine our history for tragedy dealt from the hand of evil human beings, such as the shameful days of slavery in America, the tragedy of the American Indian, who had their homeland invaded and stolen, their people murdered and herded into captivity, Adolf Hitler's Germany, Russia's invasion of Afghanistan, the cruel reign of Saddam Hessian who left mass graves in the desert of his own countrymen, Stalin's genocide of twenty million Jews, the overrunning of the Ukraine, the genocides of South Africa, the murders of the Ambassador and his staff in Bengazi, the tragedy in Boston where lives were cut short, and other lives forever changed, and on and on... the soil from which these acts were harvested is the same.  When mankind, whether an individual, or a group of individuals, purposely, whether for greed or power, deliberately harms another individual or group, the enabling soil is the same.  These behaviors, when stripped down to their root causes, always are found to have yielded their crops from the same nourishment source.

 

The first component of the soil is always a self serving disregard of another, or a group of others.   That idea that one has value and privilege over others, which is coupled with the desire to obtain whatever is valued without regard as to who is harmed, is a fundamental component of the soil.  Nourishment which enables actions which harm or kill others comes from what is really in essence the embracing of an individual that their own thinking is above everything else.  Basically, this thinking is their true god, and they follow and serve it as such.  The thinking that they will do as they please, circumventing the true God given rights of others, while embracing the harming of others as a legitimate, and even sometimes personally satisfying means to their own private ends, is what they live by.  There are those among them of such a nature that the torture, pain, and suffering of another brings them pleasure.  Some individuals may regret that they must resort to despicable acts to get what they want.  In the end, when faced with the personal sacrifice of their own desires as part of doing the right thing, they will do the wrong thing, but usually try to hide it.  They do this because they still hold regard for how others view them.  By their choices they prove their true character is really no better than the blatant power-monger, who has no apparent conscious.  Often these persons who truly do not care who is harmed, or how others view them when they harm others, are referred to by professional health care workers and those in law enforcement, by the clinical term of sociopath.  

 

In order for an individual or a group to have their rights disregarded, there must be another component to the soil which yields such fruit.  Collectively, what mankind permits to flourish, is what will flourish.  If we as the American people, whether we believed slavery to be right or wrong, had sat back and allowed those in the Southern States, who because they personally benefited from the enslavement of other human beings, and insisted on participating in the slavery of others, then slavery would have continued.  What a great cost was paid to right that wrong which seemed so large and accepted as to be beyond remedy.  Often the most important concepts of honor are overcome and abolished or held hostage by corrupt leadership and power, and the cost is great to redeem and rescue them.  Never is their rescue imminent among those who ignore injustice because its redemption is too costly and time consuming.  Just knowing something to be wrong, never participating in it personally, does not prevent wrong doing by others.  In fact knowledge of wrong doing coupled with failure to act by an individual, constitutes negligence, and participation in the wrong doing.  If you physically watch a rape in progress, do nothing when weapons are clearly at your disposal to end the violence and crime, you are partially guilty of the crime itself.  In order to do the right thing, not only must an individual, an organization, a nation, or an alliance never participate in the wrong itself, it must stand offensively, and defensively against the wrong.  

 

 Who among good people anywhere would stand by in the physical presence of another committing a rape and fail to act?  There is no difference in standing by in the physical presence of the act, and standing by in the aftermath and failing to act.  As individuals we have less power to act whether in the physical presence, or in the aftermath, but as a group, such as SWAN, as an organization or institution, such as the Army, or other branch of service, or as a nation, we have great power to act.  Certainly, as a member of the governing institution of the greatest nation the world has ever known, our Congressional men and women, and our Senators have great power to act.  I visited the offices and spoke with the representatives working for some of these leaders to whom we have entrusted our country's best interest, on Thursday.  As I spoke with whomever was sent to receive our delegation, I watched their eyes...  What person representing the American people, I thought to myself, could hear the stories of these victims, who have been betrayed by their own, then had the crime suppressed, and watched the criminal go free, could fail to prioritize passing the legislation needed to ensure the medical and mental health services needed by these victims?  What person, serving in our government, could be trusted to serve our common needs as citizens, who would fail to give their urgent support and vote to such legislation such as the Ruth Moore Act? 

 

As an individual, as the grand-daughter of a Soldier who served and was wounded by mustard gas on the battlefield as he fought in France during WWI, as the daughter of a Soldier who contracted malaria, and from that hepatitis, when he was a member of the occupation forces of WWII, and as the wife of a Soldier who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, as the mother-in-law of two Soldiers who have served in the same places, one receiving a purple heart, and as the mother of a Soldier who served 8 years, I know I must act.  In every way I can I must stand against those self-serving individuals, possessed of an evil and a rational I cannot comprehend, who perpetrate these crimes, and those who tolerate these crimes in order to serve their own wants and desires. 

 

The same soil that nourishes these crimes, nourishes all types of wrong doing.  Theft, abuse of power, negligent monitoring of the precious resources of this country and our people, fraud, waste, dishonorable behavior leading to scandal, sending our troops into harms way without true need, ignoring the needs of veterans who would not have the needs, had they not went into service to stand in protection of the liberty of us all... all these things which not only harm and destroy the lives of individuals, but harm and destroy our nation, find nourishment in the same soil.

 

As I have so proudly written and stated many times, my husband graduated in the top five percent of his class at West Point.  I have had the privilege of visiting many places around the world, viewing famous buildings, many of them ancient, including Washington D.C., and I have even been to the war room in the basement of the Pentagon, and sat in the chair which Condoleezza Rice sat, but none impressed me as West Point did.  The architecture certainly is grand, the setting certainly magnificent, but that is not the true grandeur of the campus.  To see young men and women studying to stand as leaders for our country, to understand from my husband what is taught, and how it is taught, I stood in awe of what power lies within the walls of that great institution.  That power is only as great as the soil is strong upon which its foundations sit.  If the ground gives way, those great buildings will fall.  I offer to you from the first chapter of The Cadet Honor Code, the synopsis of the honor code taught each cadet from their first day at West Point 

 

 "A cadet will not lie, cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do."

 

The following is a link to the publication from which a Cadet at West Point is taught the meaning of honor:

  http://www.west-point.org/publications/honorsys/chap1.html

 

Honor flourishes in a very different soil than does rape which goes ignored and unpunished, and whose victims are denied justice and needed services.  I have a responsibility, and so do you if your citizenship is that of the United States of America.  

 

I am asking all other Americans to join the cause to which I am so dedicated, for just as I feel no person serving in the leadership of our military, or serving in our government, can in good conscious deny the urgent need and sacred duty of each of us to support the legislation known as the Ruth Moore Act, neither can any citizen of our great nation fail to act in support.  In the postings I make I will be giving specific stories of the injustices already having happened, and the needed actions to help right these wrongs.  Also I will give specific parts of the Uniform Code of Military Justice which enable the miscarriage of justice in the case of rape, and in fact allow abuse by corrupt leadership in granting individuals power outside the protections of our constitution for many crimes.  Never were these powers intended to be used to manipulate in order to promote, protect, or enhance the careers of individuals.  That is happening on a wide, almost virulent scale, because the wolf who is fed is the wolf who prevails.   

 
              Ruth Moore, whom I had the honor and privilege of meeting in person.                    

There are among us true giants, we are blessed country.