Tuesday, January 24, 2012

D.C.'s World War I Memorial

Many D.C. government types are up in arms about Congress's desire to turn our recently restored World War I Memorial into a national one. Outcries to leave it alone -- it belongs to D.C. are misguided.

This could be a huge opportunity. Instead of another trouncing on our rights by members of Congress, this could be the stimulus we need to enlighten the average American to the fact that we have no voice in Congress. Think about it:

D.C. residents, who couldn't even vote for a local government, much less a national government, volunteered to serve that very same government. So many had their lives taken by disease and bullets in foreign lands. To have willingly sacrificed for a government that didn't recognize their citizenship as equal to every other American's smells of racism. I would go so far as to say it is like southern history textbooks claiming that slaves willingly served in the Confederate army!

Our elegant, dignified, tasteful little monument could be a centerpiece for an enlarged memorial. Stories about D.C. residents who fought, suffered and died for a government that did not fully recognize them (and still doesn't) could open eyes to a shameful truth.

It still shocks me when I hear how many people outside of this region don't know about the way D.C. residents are treated and mistreated by Congress. Some think that, living here, we have an unfair advantage. HA! They think every American can gripe to their senators and representatives to complain about anything and everything. More than half a million American citizens have one, non-voting delegate in Congress. Period.

Having said all that, I do not think D.C. should become a state. I know: that's heresy for some, but hear me out.

The District of Columbia is a unique territory. I believe that when founding fathers suggested designating it that way that they thought it would encompass nothing more than the federal enclave. Actual residents, other than slaves, and not associated with running the government, didn't enter their thinking. After all, members of Congress came to town infrequently and brought their own retinues of servants and slaves.

It is taking far too long to make needed changes in the governing dynamics of the District of Columbia. The U.S. Constitution needs to be amended, as it has been several times, to reflect new realities. One U.S. Senator and House representation according to the population formula is fair and way past due. Anything that can enlighten others about this injustice can only help. So. . .

Bring on the World War I Memorial additions AND be sure to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth about D.C. residents' peculiar standing and the extraordinary sacrifices of our forefathers.


Janney said...

America has such a colorful past...

Mark said...

That DC thing is strange. I don't really get it. I guess I get the fact that they wanted to put the White House in an area not affiliated with any particular State, but you have little or no representation while you live there? mmmmmmm