Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Leif's Email to General Wesley Clark - September 10, 2003

On September 10, 2003, Leif sent this email to most if not all of his email contacts. He spoke very highly of Gen. Clark and very much wanted him to be president.

I signed the petition to get General Wesley Clark to run for President today. They provided a box to fill in a message to him so I decided to use it. Here is what I wrote. I hope you all will think about what I have said when the election comes in a year no matter which candidate you support.

In the wake of 9/11 I am greatly concerned, NOT with the physical safety of America but rather with the safety of American freedom and civil liberty. As a veteran and army brat I have had many opportunities to experience life outside the USA and appreciate what we have and what it is worth. Unfortunately many Americans do not have this insight and have been willing to put the freedom that they have taken for granted at risk to ensure the safety they have also taken for granted.

Benjamin Franklin once said that a man that trades a piece of his liberty for safety deserves neither. I agree with this statement. As a citizen and a veteran I place a high priority on the defense of America but that defense must stop when it itself becomes a danger to American freedom. Specifically the Bill of Rights must not be put in jeopardy. The current administration scares me in this regard, and in particular the so-called "Patriot Act," which I personally see as un-American and in opposition to everything this country is supposed to stand for. There are no parts of the Bill of rights that are expendable.

I have previoulsy had difficulty aligning with the Democratic Party over the issue of gun control. Still a part of the Bill of Rights, this should not be infringed upon on at the federal level. If California thinks they need strict gun bans, that is up to California. I won't live in California. But how do the problems in Los Angeles affect me here in Kansas?  This is a local issue, not a federal one.

So, General Clark, I sincerely hope that you choose to take on this burden and continue to defend American freedom in your retirement. Remember the Army oath of office both you and I swore to, "I will defend the constitution of the United States from all enemies foreign or domestic." I consider the current administration to be enemies of the constitution and they must be contested on the political battlefield just as surely as Al Qaeda must be fought on the physical battlefield.

As a veteran I salute you, sir, and hope you will rise to this challenge.

SPC Leif Garretson
US ARMY (medically retired)

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