I don’t know why people are protesting against the impending war between the United States and Iraq with the same, old message from 1990: President Bush is going to war over oil.
I believe that the President of the United States would only resort to war over something more important like human rights abuses, but in with the current situation it would seem that the future of oil imports is one of many key reasons for a regime change in Iraq, but we have no one to blame for this but ourselves.
That’s right, you and me, Joe and Jolene American, are responsible for a war over oil.
Because you and I (citizens of the United States) use more oil and gas than almost the entire world combined. America goes through fossil fuel by the billions of gallons a day and you can’t just blame the people who drive large SUVs because your little Honda still uses gas and oil to get around. Even our electricity comes from power plants that use oil to power the steam generators that power homes all over the US. On the east coast a lot of homes are still being heated with oil.
Our current standard of living in America demands more oil and gas than we can produce within our own borders (unless you want to open ANWR) and so we rely on other countries to fuel this need, this way of life.
The President and Congress have the unspoken task of protecting the America way of life so naturally they are concerned with the current events of the Middle East, Russia, South America and North Africa. Should any of these regions stop the flow of oil, so stops America, thus the need for diplomacy and close relations. And when diplomacy fails the last resort is military force.
In no way does this let the President and Congress off the hook. America needs a better energy plan that includes more research into alternative fuels but nothing will change for the better until you and I agree to make some changes in our own lives.
First, we need to pay more for fuel — period. Citizens of the United States pay less for a gallon of gas than almost everyone else in the world. Our allies in Europe are paying many times more per liter/gallon than we do. Gasoline is one of the cheapest liquids available to the American consumer. Think about it, we are willing to pay $3.50 for 16 oz. of Starbucks or $7 for a shot of alcohol, yet we cry foul (among other choice words) if the price per gallon for gasoline climbs near two dollars.
Second, we need to support better, energy saving methods of transportation, heating, and energy generation. The Big Three auto makers have said many times over that they are able to create more efficient transportation but the cost of manufacturing these vehicles is above the price range of what the average US consumer is willing to spend on a car or truck.
If you and I are not willing to start making sacrifices then the need for more oil will continue to grow, as will our necessity to police over those nations which own the titles to the oil. It is time for everyone, including war protestors, to start taking some responsibility for the pending conflict in the Middle East and begin to make changes in the American lifestyle that is so dependent on oil.