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  • Saturday, February 18, 2006


    Who Interpretes the Loyalty Oath?

    Reading about this exchange reminds me of loyalty oaths and dissent. What I find interesting is the border between free speech and a government's expectation of loyalty. There seems to be confusion about the ability of federal employees to perform conscientious work/service and yet also being able to express disagreement with the government or elected officials. These are not mutually exclusive positions.

    When an anti-Bush bumper sticker becomes cause for suspicion about a federal employee's basic loyalties, we are definitely over the edge into mandating political beliefs and a cult of personality. Since the vast majority of federal employees are not political appointees, they continue to work from one administration to another, from Democratic President to Republican. Unless we want to attempt to fire all members of the opposite party every time a new President is elected from a different party, this administration would be well to keep these repressive tactics at bay. It only generates accusations, well-founded in my opinion, of fascism and mandatory party membership.

    Blind patriotism likes nothing more than to poke other people's eyes out.

    (Hey, that's catchy! But the wording needs work. Blind patriotism likes company. Blind patriotism loves to blind the opposition. Okay, the first version is the best, I think.)

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