Do we really know who is running our state and federal governments?
By Sparta Live | April 15, 2019 8:44 am
Democratic Dialog – By Debra Wines
I believe most people who studied or read about civics, politics, and history, will say the obvious answer is, or least it should be, “We the people.” We the people are responsible for electing legislators who represent us. Every person elected takes an oath of office. the wording may vary in minor ways, but, basically, every elected official and some appointed officials swear to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. They also swear they will faithfully discharge the duties of their office.
None of the oaths that are taken by our elected legislators swear to abide by the wishes of special interests’ groups, large corporate donors, or even their own political party. Even though I realize there is nothing simple about our government, the oath our elected officials take is basically simple and straight forward. Their only job is to do what is right and best for the people they represent within the confines of our Constitution and to protect the people of the United States of America from any person, foreign country, and/or entity that threatens our Constitution and our form of government.
In my honest opinion, a majority of our elected officials, over the past several decades, has decided the will of the people isn’t as important as the desires of muti-billion-dollar corporations, the NRA, the far-right Evangelical (Christians) or large Political Action Committees, like ALEC, Citizens United, Citizens for Prosperity, etc. Each and every one of those groups has its own agenda and believe their ideas are fair better for America than any ideas the majority of Americans may have that would be beneficial to themselves, their families, their communities, and their quality of life.
Have you noticed recently the abundance of proposed laws and platform policies in various states, not just in the South, but all over the country, that sound exactly the same? These proposed laws and policies may address a multitude of issues that appear to be in direct contradiction to our federal laws, such as trans-gender bathrooms; marriage rights; jobs; housing; baked goods; medical care; and adoptions that directly impact the LBGTQ communities. There are also stricter laws being proposed in states pushing the availability for a legal abortion out of the reach of more and more women who are faced with making a very difficult and personal choice. There are proposals to make it more difficult for a doctor to honor his or her Hippocratic Oath because some powerful religious groups have gathered forces to interfere with the private healthcare provided by a doctor to his or her patient. Some will say that issue only refers to abortion. Perhaps at this point in time, it does, but what about tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year? What will happen if some powerful political group decides someone over the age of 75 who doesn’t have assets worth over $250,000 is too much of a drain on society? What if another group decides people with a physical illnesses and/or emotional disabilities or is not one of the “elite” and has an IQ of over 100 should no longer be allowed to live because they might be too smart and could cause problems for those in power? What if a powerful political group decides everyone should have their DNA tested, and, if your results show that you are anything other than 100 percent white, by whatever standards the group determines, you no longer qualify as an American citizen?
I know there are many of you who think this is absurd. That could never happen in the United States of America. All I can say is, you better wake up! It has been going on for a long time. Little bit by little bit, powerful political groups with their own agendas have been chipping away at our rights. We have fewer and fewer choices for candidates in our elections because both the Democrats and the Republicans are playing dangerous games by denying the American voters the ability to choose their own candidates. Voter suppression is a major tool for the Republican Party, yet the Democratic Party has done very little to actually fix it. Democrats need to ask themselves “why?” Have our leaders been too influenced by these corrupt corporations, just like the leaders of the Republican Party? Why does our current Democratic leadership talk big yet back away from most fights? Are they afraid of crossing their donors?
The Democratic Party I knew growing up had strong leaders. They supported unions. They supported public education. They supported our troops and our veterans. They stood up to social injustice. They stood up for civil and equal rights for all people. They stood up for the welfare of children and the elderly. They stood up for a strong middle class. The majority had a backbone!
Some people are either in awe or shocked by the new progressive Democrats now in the House of Representatives. The ones that are in awe are the ones who see a resurgence of the Democratic Party they respected. The ones that are shocked are members of the “old guard” who were voted into Congress 30 or 40 years ago and had big dreams for America and were idealistic, but they sold out to corporate and special interests’ groups and are now some of the richest members of Congress today. Shame on them. They have lost sight of what their job is supposed to be. Instead they seemed to have sold their humanity and souls to the highest bidder for money and power.
Most of our original Founding Fathers were already well to do or even rich when they started with the idea of creating a new country free from tyranny. I don’t believe they envisioned that the work they were doing was to primarily and personally enrich themselves. They created a country and government for and by the PEOPLE!