Let's Hang Together
  by Tim Ferguson

Iíve seen the emails that Bartcop occasionally posts from visitors who vow to never visit the site
again, forsaking their former respect and friendship, because of an honest opinion BC stated.
I watch this happen and I am saddened every time.

We on the left have had few enough victories in my lifetime (I just turned 40).
Weíve had even fewer effective fighters. If we keep abandoning each other over mere differences
of opinion, how will we ever stand against the right wing?

Iím not going to make Bartcop into something heís not. Heís just a guy.
I donít agree with everything he says, but I doubt that he would agree with everything I say.
Every person is an individual with unique life experiences that shape our opinions and ideals.
None of us will agree on every issue. But if we on the left truly respect and encourage diversity,
does that not also apply to personal opinions? Do we hold each other under such close scrutiny
that we cannot forgive a dissenting opinion? If so, we might as well give up now.

Uniformity is the environment of the fascist.
A closed mind is the enemy of reason and liberty.
When we judge our brothers we limit ourselves.
When we cast out our own kind, we diminish our capacity to fight.

We live in a dark time for progressives. Our elected leaders are quickly broken, compromised and
subverted by the realities of financing their campaigns. Diligent press members who dare to break
with the party line are quickly silenced or lost to obscurity. Citizen protesters who take their causes
to the street are arrested, or have their spirits broken by brutal police tactics.

If the United States actually were the noble entity it claims to already be (a fantasy only fools and
republicans believe) there would be no need to fight, no need for a Bartcop. Unfortunately, that
nation to which we pledged our allegiance as school children was nothing more than a beautiful myth.

We on the left want that Myth of America to be real.
We want to believe in our country, but not so badly that we are willing to accept lies as fact.
We see our democracy as a work in progress, and do not shirk the responsibility we have
as citizens  to make America worthy of our highest expectations.

Freedom, equality, tolerance, liberty, justice for all.
These are not mere words to be tossed about for effect.
They are our truest, noblest, highest goals as a people.
They are the touchstones our Founding Fathers carved into stone and into our national heritage.
We on the left (Bartcop in particular) fight because we want to be proud of our country
and proud of ourselves as Americans.

We need each other more than any of us could ever know.
Let us work together as brothers and sisters; let us set aside our differences and disagreements.
We must focus on the ideals that draw us together, and forgive the opinions that could tear us apart.
We MUST stand together, now more than ever.

Tim Ferguson

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