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Hypocrisy and the difference between rights and privileges

Originally posted at dKos, where a lot of people just don’t get it.

Imagine how different our world would be if Thomas Jefferson penned these words:

We hold these truths to be somewhat apparent, that some men are created more or less equal, that they are endowed by their leaders with certain alienable Privileges, that among these are Life, Malaise and the pursuit of Melancholy.

Sounds pretty silly, doesn’t it? Certainly not the kind of rousing rhetoric with which to declare the founding of our country. Fortunately, Jefferson wrote this instead:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

Show this picture everywhere

Tomorrow, the whole world will watch as John McCain introduces and appears with his running mate as the Republican ticket in public for the first time. The timing of the announcement is meant to achieve four key goals for the McCain campaign:

1) Keep Obama/Biden from getting the kajillion point bounce they need for the Democratic National Convention to be considered a success.

2) Dominate the weekend news cycle.

3) Generate a little excitement for the moribund Republican Party heading into their dirgefest national convention.

4) Distract us all from an important anniversary.

I have a dream

Forty-five years ago tomorrow, Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke these famous words on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial:

May 1, 2003: President Bush Announces Major Combat Operations in Iraq Have Ended…

Thank you all very much. Admiral Kelly, Captain Card, officers and sailors of the USS Abraham Lincoln, my fellow Americans: Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed. (Applause.) And now our coalition is engaged in securing and reconstructing that country.

April 30, 2008

Fighting in Baghdad’s Shi’ite slum of Sadr City made April the deadliest month for Iraqi civilians since last August and for U.S. troops since last September, figures obtained on Wednesday showed.…