OK, I'm not a historian or a scholar -- what I know about Egypt could fit on Sarah Palin's "palmeprompter" -- but I do know that an overwhelming feeling of awe fills my heart when watching the massive throngs of courageous humanity in the streets of its cities.
I know that at age 7, my son, mystified by the magic of mummies, tombs and pyramids, decided he wanted to be an Egyptologist when he grew up, and dragged me to the King Tut exhibit when it came to our state. He read every word of every exhibit's placard.
I know that Egypt is the second-largest beneficiary of our nation's generosity, our military aid, second only to Israel. This "aid" has averaged over 2 billion dollars annually for the last thirty-plus years, and if tear gas canisters are thrown or weapons fired upon the protestors, our hands will certainly be bloodied.
I know that Mubarak ruled as a dictator for 30 years, oppressing his people (20% living below the poverty level), and validating heinous acts of torture as routine punishment. I know that the United States has taken advantage of this disciplinary "option", sending captives to his "prisons" through our rendition policy with Egypt.
I know that this massive movement, this Revolution, is that of the Egyptian people's alone. We can "attend" internet virtual marches, demonstrate in solidarity in our streets, and sign petitions of support, but this isn't our fight -- it's theirs alone and we should benefit and learn from this Egyptian inspiration. With over 50 million people in our nation without healthcare, countless homeless sleeping in our streets (around 82,000 on any given night in Los Angeles County alone), constant cuts to veteran's benefits, literally millions of US homeowners in foreclosure and threats to cut Social Security, we have reason to join together and mobilize for change.
The events of the past week have truly been courageous and inspirational. So, slide over, Sphinx.
Make room for Egypt's greatest treasure -- its people.