Politics Big Bad Librarians Shush Bush!
posted by January 22 at 15:47 PMon
Consider for a moment librarians. Nerdy, bespectacled hoteliers of the homeless? Demure, persnickety, compulsive shushers? Hell yes! But as of this moment, librarians are also Extra Super Ninja Freedom Fighting Guerilla Shushers, out there kicking ass for the future of democracy (as per the ALA mission statement)!
At this very moment, the brave Library Association of America (which is holding its Midwinter conference in Seattle as we speak) is mobilizing its library-ish forces to put The Ultimate Shush on G.W. Bush! Something called “The ALA’s Social Responsibilities Round Table Action Council” (an elected board in charge of policy making for the ALA) passed the following resolution just hours ago, which demands the immediate impeachment of George W. Bush, for, among many, many, many other things, “Subverting the Constitution of the United States.”
Do the librarians actually have the power to impeach George W. Bush? Don’t be silly. But the above resolution will most likely become official ALA policy (it has to go through one last vote tomorrow—and it is expected to pass), and the ALA hopes such a bold statement and definitive stance will get the bye-bye Bush ball rolling. In any event, I would like to declare 2007 The Year of the Warrior Librarian, and suggest that everyone send a librarian a nice bouquet or something today. Cash money and/or (probably and) oral sex are also appropriate under the circumstances.
Full text of the resolution after the jump.
Resolution on Impeachment of President George W. Bush
WHEREAS, Democracy is a core value that defines, informs, and guides our professional practice and is the base on which rests the foundation of modern librarianship (Core Values Statement); and
WHEREAS, The American Library Association affirms the responsibility of the leaders of the United States to protect and preserve the freedoms that are the foundation of our democracy (ALA Resolution on the USA Patriot Act and Related Measures That Infringe on the Rights of Public Library Users); and
WHEREAS, Open and unfettered access to information created and held by the government is a prerequisite for a free and democratic society (Resolution on Security and Access to Government Information); and
WHEREAS, The broad social responsibilities of the American Library Association are, in part, defined in terms of the contribution that librarianship can make in ameliorating or solving the critical problems of society, and the willingness of the ALA to take a position on current critical issues with the relationship to libraries and library service set forth in the position statement (ALA Policy Manual, 1.1); and
WHEREAS, the most sacred duty of the U.S. government and its officials is to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States and so protect the civil liberties of all U.S. persons (Resolution on the USA PATRIOT Act Reauthorization); and
WHEREAS, The ALA condemns the use or threat of use of torture by the US government as a barbarous violation of human rights, intellectual freedom and the rule of law. The ALA decries—along with the practice of torture anywhere—the suggestion by the US government that under a `state of emergency' in this country, or in territories it occupies, torture is in any case an acceptable tool in pursuit of its goals (A Resolution Against the Use of Torture as a Violation of the American Library Association’s Basic Values); and
WHEREAS, The American Library Association opposes any use of governmental power to suppress the free and open exchange of knowledge and information or to intimidate individuals exercising free inquiry (ALA Resolution on the USA Patriot Act and Related Measures That Infringe on the Rights of Public Library Users); and
WHEREAS, The American Library Association holds that suppression of ideas undermines a democratic society (ALA Resolution on the USA Patriot Act and Related Measures That Infringe on the Rights of Public Library Users); and
WHEREAS, The American Library Association recognizes broad public opposition, regardless of one’s political party affiliation or lack thereof, to the conduct of George W. Bush in his Office of the President of the United States (Newsweek poll 11-07-06); and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush has abused his power by failing to take care that the laws were faithfully executed by directing or authorizing the National Security Agency to conduct electronic surveillance outside of the statutes Congress has prescribed as the exclusive means for such surveillance and to use such information for purposes unknown but unrelated to any lawful function of his office; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush has subverted the Constitution, its guarantee of a republican form of government, and the constitutional separation of powers by undermining the rightful authority of Congress to declare war, oversee foreign affairs, and make appropriations. He did so by justifying war with false and misleading statements which have proven to be completely unfounded (Resolution on the Connection Between the Iraq War and Libraries), deceiving the people of the United States and their Congress, thereby undermining democracy; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush, authorized a preemptive, aggressive war in violation of international law and without the authorization of the United Nations Security Council; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush authorized conduct of the war that involved the commission of war crimes including collective punishment in the form of attacks upon civilian populations, hospitals, residential neighborhoods, electrical power stations and water purification facilities; the widespread use of torture; mass arrests and detention of civilians and civilian home demolitions; and the destruction and desecration of the cultural and archeological heritage of Iraq; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush, has abused his power by violating the constitutional and international rights of citizens and non-citizens by arbitrarily detaining them indefinitely inside and outside of the United States, without due process, without charges and with limited access to council or courts. He has failed to faithfully execute the laws of the United States by allowing his administration to condone and codify torture through the passage of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, failing to investigate and prosecute high-level officials responsible for torture, and officially refusing to accept the binding nature of both international law in which the United Nations defines torture as a crime against humanity and a statutory ban on cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush has arrogated excessive power to the executive branch in violation of basic constitutional principles by making over 800 signing statements declaring the legislation he is signing into law does not apply to the President; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush, as President and Commander in Chief of disaster relief, failed to mobilize federal resources to deal with the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, causing unnecessary human suffering and loss of life; and
WHEREAS, George W. Bush, in his conduct of the Office of the President of the United States, has consistently denied the scientific consensus around global warming and its causes; misrepresented, distorted and suppressed scientific information about global warming, and suppressed medical research studies in HIV/AIDS prevention; and
WHEREAS, In all of this, George W. Bush has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as President and subversive of constitutional government to the great prejudice of the cause of law and justice, and to the manifest injury of the people of the United States of America and the world; and
WHEREAS, The conduct of George W. Bush is seriously incompatible with the constitutional form and the principles of our government and proper performance of constitutional duties of the presidential office;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, That the American Library Association considers that George W. Bush, by such conduct, warrants impeachment.
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, That this resolution be forwarded to the President of the United States, all members of Congress, the press, and others as appropriate.