Check Time for Humanity Featured
The governor of Michigan, George Romney---Mitt's dad---was about to officially start a run for the Republican nomniation for President of the United states. Having led Rambler/American Motors Corporation out of near financial ruin, he later was elected to three terms as Michigan's governor. Romney had the support of many of the country's Republican governors. in his intent to lead the country. He enjoyed great support from his state's voters and even looked "presidential."
In the first days of August 1967, some time had gone by during which his support for the war had been varying and tepid, but he had not vocally bucked the Republican Party line of support for it. He had visited Viet Nam with other political leaders to get a first-hand look in late 1965.
From Wikipedia: On August 7, 1967, Romney told a reporter, "When I came back from Viet Nam [in November 1965], I'd just had the greatest brainwashing that anybody can get." He then shifted to opposing the war: "I no longer believe that it was necessary for us to get involved in South Vietnam to stop Communist aggression in Southeast Asia," he declared. Decrying the "tragic" conflict, he urged "a sound peace in South Vietnam at an early time." Thus Romney disavowed the war and reversed himself from his earlier stated belief that the war was "morally right and necessary."
Those words, and the response of his fellow governors and those who had visited Viet Nam with him 21 months earlier, effectively killed his campaign for the Presidency.
Again, from Wikipedia: Eight other governors who had been on the same 1965 trip as Romney said no such activity (brainwashing) had taken place, with one of them, Philip H. Hoff of Vermont, saying Romney's remarks were "outrageous, kind of stinking ... Either he's a most na´ve man or he lacks judgment." ..... Senator Eugene McCarthy, running against Johnson for the Democratic nomination, said that in Romney's case, "a light rinse would have been sufficient." Republican Congressman Robert T. Stafford of Vermont sounded a common concern: "If you're running for the presidency, you are supposed to have too much on the ball to be brainwashed." After the remark was aired, Romney's poll ratings quickly nosedived, going from 11 percent behind Richard Nixon to 26 percent behind.
Romney was out of the race before it had officially begun. Nearly a half-century later, there is no way to know whether his campaign-fatal remark was just the product of tiredness near the end of a long work day or simply evidence of the courage to speak his truth, no matter the consequences. Maybe it was simply a matter of integrity that was finally ready to express itself nearly 2 years after he had gone to Viet Nam.
Might it be that it took guts to admit he had been wrong, that he had been brainwashed?
Could this be a reminder that we are all being called upon to have the courage to face what is going on in our world, to see it clearly and to admit that we, too, have been brainwashed?
It is not possible to move beyond brainwashing---to recover from it---until one is willing to admit that one has been brainwashed. A similar analogy: it is not possible to escape from a prision until one realizes that he is already in a prison.
Consider the possibility: It takes much more courage to divert from the party line, much more courage to speak an unpopular truth, much more courage to live and operate out of the heart than it does to stick with what might make you more popular or might keep you on your Dad's good guy list. In this strange world we live in, multitudes stick with stupid religions and destructive, inhumane political beliefs simply because they fear rejection by their family or friends, or fear that an elder relative might "turn over in their grave."
Our collective reality, as I see it: When it comes to both facing ourselves and facing our world, we are afraid of not only speaking our truth, but even thinking it. It is time for us to get over that.
It is my observation that our world culture has largely been brainwashed to believe all kinds of things that are obviously seen as false by one who is truly aware.
Our governments have brainwashed us into thinking that they are supportive forces for good in the world, despite the piles of evidence they give us every day to the contrary.
Our religions have brainwashed us into embodying guilt, fear, intolerance and the inferiority of women. The practice of any of the big religions is a masochistic drain of our collective power. They divide and weaken us at a time when it is crucial for us to unite and empower ourselves.
Our mass news media have brainwashed us into believing that they are telling us the truth about what is happening in the world.
Advertisers have brainwashed us into living as if we need their products in order to feel better about ourselves, or to have more power.
Pharmaceutical companies have brainwashed us into thinking that their products are better or less harmful than the ones nature offers.
Our systems of "higher education" have brainwashed us into thinking that we are being educated by them about what is really important in life.
Maybe we can boil it down to three things we might be ready to face.
* We have been brainwashed into believing a set of falsehoods about who is leading and protecting us, who we are, and where we are going.
* It doesn't serve us to judge George Romney or anyone else. We are being pushed now to take care of our own business and let everybody else be who they are.
* It is not productive to worry about how others may judge us. Moving beyond fear has much to do with learning to trust our inner guidance and then think and act in accordance with it.
It may be productive to choose to know that such guidance is based in the heart and soul.
It takes courage to face ourselves and our world as we are. The weakest among us are able to sit and stew about the realities of the world or to avoid them as we have avoided our own true selves.
For many of us now, it's gut check time. The sooner that we wake up, the less suffering our world will need to endure.
Carlo Ami blogs at http://www.yourpausebutton.com/
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