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-1Fear is not freedom.

Fear is the mind killer, Frank Herbert wrote. However, fear is but half the
equation of domination. The second half is hopelessness.

We saw clearly demonstrated in the early years of this century the ease,
with which fear and hopelessness saturates freedom.

The insane activities of a single man ignited another's drive for revenge,
which bled into the thoughts of the people. Led by his fanatic need for
retribution millions clamored around his cause, feeding on the fear he
stoked to maintain the frenzy of the innocent.

The fervor rose in pitch until it permeated society through the multiple
channels of media driven by online faces and spaces, bloggers, and cable
network news. Discussions removed from civility, evolved into
catastrophic verbal brawls and occasional physical confrontation.

The death of innocents, once a rare horror viewed with complete disdain,
became commonplace as parents killed not only each other, but also
their entire families without cause it seemed, or any form of justification
beyond that of fear.

As if this was not sufficient to satisfy, leaders twisted by the quest for
apocalypse, targeted the welfare of the less fortunate in contradiction to
their religious teacher's words. Then, they flooded other lands with the
quagmire of their venomous hatred of common decency.

Spiraling, the frenzy of fear's hatred, their followers attacked any person
or idea they now believed with the conviction of the insane, affronted the
concepts they allegedly upheld.

The welfare and health of all citizens no longer stood as a moral

foundation of freedom, but instead, according to the few leaders now on
platforms of greed and personal desire for fame, undermined the
principles that so many combat heroes sacrificed lives and futures to
create more than two centuries earlier and since.

Solutions no longer seem to exist, excluding the most radical, dissect the
diseased remains of a nation once held in the highest esteem by all
others. When finished, discard, or allow secession to root out those
leaders who will call their followers to Lemming-like retreats on the rock-
strewn shores of religious persecution.

Those leaders, thinking themselves elite aristocrats, noblemen, and

princes, will gather armies to corral and control their followers once
those drones declare their error and plead with outsiders for humane

Of course, there are alternatives, but none with fear and hopelessness
interwoven through the fabric of order.

Acceptance and hope, like that which created democracy from the ashes
of monarchy, and the voices of men and women who understand and
uphold equality and morality are what is needed now.

Yet, I now wonder if this society can be rescued from the damage
severing the arteries of peaceful dialogue. A few men with wealth and
power created a tidal wave, and like any tsunami, the water of
misunderstanding mindlessly roils and churns, swallowing the good and
evil together.

I am afraid that the future holds only division, since the two sides now
represented in town hall meetings do not care to find common ground.
Each seeks the higher level, the path most walked on rather than the
trail trod by those who listen to the beat of a distant, and it seems
forgotten drummer. AS they do, the least among us die and starve, which
is the ultimate demise of democracy and freedom.