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Text of Mayor Anderson's speech

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 30 2006 4:22 p.m. MDT

We are here today because of our values. We love our country. We cherish the freedoms and liberties of our country. We don't call those who speak out against our nation's leaders unpatriotic or un-American or appeasers of fascists, as we heard from our nation's secretary of defense yesterday. We have good, wholesome family values. In our families, we teach honesty, we teach kindness and compassion toward others, we teach that violence, if ever justified, must be an absolutely last resort. In our families, we teach that our nation's constitutional values are to be upheld, and that they are worth standing up, as we are here today, and fighting for. Our family values promote respect and equal rights toward everyone, regardless of race, regardless of ethnic origin, and regardless of sexual orientation. In our families, we teach the value of hard work and competence — and we are left to wonder about a President who, after receiving an intelligence memo about the threat posed by al Qaeda, decides to continue his month-long vacation — just before the 9/11 attacks on our country.

As we demand the truth from others, let us also face the truth. Our government all too often has not cared at all about the human rights of people in other nations — and it doesn't really care about democracy, unless it leads to the election of those who will do our bidding.

Consider the irony regarding the claims that Saddam had chemical weapons and, because of that, we needed to rush to war in Iraq. When Saddam Hussein was using chemical weapons — first against Iranians, then against his own people, the Kurds — our country provided him with biological and chemical agents and equipment to make the weapons. Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush refused even to support economic sanctions, let alone go to war against him, against Hussein for his use of weapons of mass destruction. What did our nation do in response to Hussein's use of chemical weapons, killing tens of thousand of people, when he actually had them and we knew that he had them? We befriended, coddled, and rewarded him — with government-guaranteed loans totaling $5 billion since 1983, freeing up currency for Hussein to modernize his military assets.

Perhaps those in the United States government who aided and abetted Saddam Hussein to further US business interests, while he was gassing the Kurds, should be sharing his courtroom dock as he is now being tried for crimes against humanity.

No more lies, no more hiding of the truth — we can stand the truth — no more wars that more than triple the value of stock in Dick Cheney's prior employer, Halliburton — and which, as of last September, has increased the value of the Halliburton CEO's stock by $78 million.

We are patriots. We are deeply concerned. And we demand change, now.

I want to hear from you.

No more lies from Condoleezza Rice about whether she and President Bush were advised before 9/11 of the possibility of planes being flown into buildings by terrorists.

No more.

No more gross incompetence in the office of the Secretary of Defense.

No more torture of human beings.

No more disregard of the basic human rights enshrined in the Geneva Convention.

No more kidnapping of people and sending them off to secret prisons in nations where they will be tortured.

No more unconstitutional wiretapping of Americans.

No more proposed amendments to the United States Constitution that would, for the first time in our nation's history, limit fundamental rights and liberties for entire classes of people simply on the basis of sexual orientation.

No more federal land giveaways to developers.

No more increases in mercury emissions from old, dirty, dangerous coalburning power plants.

No more backroom deals that deprive protection for millions of acres of wild lands in our nation.

No more attacks on immigrants who work so hard to build better lives in this nation.

No more inaction by Congress on fixing our hypocritical and inconsistent immigration laws and practices.

No more reliance on fiction rather than the science of global warming.

No more manipulation of our media with false propaganda.

No more disastrous cuts in funding for those most in need.

No more federal cuts in community policing and local law enforcement grant programs for our cities.

No more inaction on stopping the tragic genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan.

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