One of my Democratic friends was railing again last week against the ruination of America brought on by Bush and his minions. My usual response to this tirade is to advise her, in various ways, to chill out. Things aren't that bad, I say. Stick around a bit and watch them change.
But last week I didn't have it in me to argue. What brought me down was passage of the administration's pro-torture bill. As time allows, I've been struggling to understand the full impact of the bill. I haven't got through it all yet, and I still hold out some hope that I am misunderstanding much of this. But the search is profoundly discouraging, and I am losing hope. I keep thinking: The war on terror is over, and we have surrendered.
I've been critical of this country at times, but I have never felt ashamed to be an American. Now I feel shame.