Over the past several years, our elected officials in Washington cannot seem to agree on much of anything. The parties are polarized. Government is stuck in gridlock.
Making broad accusations as to which party or branch of government is at fault for the mess we are in does nothing to get at the root of the problem.
In the most recent round of gridlock, there were about 60 radical Republicans who wanted to hold our country hostage for their ideals. They seem to think that their base, those who elected them in their home state, represent the viewpoint of the entire American population.
They are unwilling to compromise on their ideals, and many even voted to allow the government to default on its financial obligations in the final round of voting. This is both dangerous and reckless.
The root of the problem is gerrymandering.
Voting districts in most areas of the country have been drawn to favor the majority party in charge. Both parties are guilty of doing it.
The radicals in Congress can get away with doing what they do because they are in safe districts. These districts heavily favor one party over another, done to rig the system. Once in place, the candidate of the party favored in these custom-made districts is virtually unbeatable in a general election.
For example, look at northern Ohio. Many congressional districts make no sense, geographically speaking. One stretches in a thin line from Cleveland to Toledo. Cities and towns are split into separate congressional districts, all for the purpose of favoring one political party over another. This should not be legal, but it is.
Gerrymandering has become a threat to our democratic process. If allowed to go on unchecked, the damage and gridlock will become more intense. You will see even more governmental decisions favoring the wealthy and well-connected.
The time for apathy is over. The only way to rid our country of gerrymandering is to speak up. There are many organizations you can find that see the problem. Support efforts for nonpartisan redistricting.
Free and fair elections should be a prominent campaign issue. There should be a law to ensure this. Seek out candidates in favor of free and fair elections, and make sure they carry it through once elected.
Also remember the obstructionists. They are the ones who block our country’s economic and political progress. Vote them out of office in the next election, if you can.
To what end, such snooping?
We now know that the National Security Agency’s snoop apparatus was used for purposes far beyond what Congress approved — far beyond what the public, or Congress, or the president, thought.
It was used to tap the cell phones of the world’s leaders, including our allies, the United Nations, the European Union and corporations here and abroad — for God knows what purpose. It is now being used to provide evidence against governmental whistleblowers and others.
It seems it was used for just about every purpose imaginable.
So I will ask the unimaginable: Was information gleaned from the NSA dragnet used to help President Obama win the election? Was it used to help others win elections?
If so, how was it used, and under what justification? Who provided the oversight of that operation?
Europeans are now taking legal action against our nation for misdeeds relating to violations of their laws regarding privacy of information.
Let me state clearly that I do not find fault with the NSA; it does what it is told to do. No need to make them the fall guy.
Divisive and dishonest
Your open cheerleading for President Obama is nauseating. In the Oct. 31 editorial “Canceled for a reason,” you state that, “Clearly, the president oversimplified the ramifications of the complex legislation.” No, that is incorrect. The president lied. Purposely omitting facts that are relevant to the argument over the Affordable Care Act is dishonest.
Second, you say, “In a political battle that left little space for nuanced explanations, he left the impression, unfortunately, that the overhaul would present virtually no inconvenience to anyone.” What is so “nuanced” about simply stating that if an individual’s policy does not meet government standards, it would not pass muster and therefore the person might be dropped by their provider?
This president has been in perpetual campaign mode for the first five years of his presidency, and you really want anyone to believe that there was “little space” to make a one-line disclaimer?
Your description of “essential benefits” follows the Obama template for disclosure of facts. Feel free to just leave out the unpopular parts, and the Affordable Care Act sounds like a great program. Don’t bother to talk about the 70-year-old woman who must pay for maternity coverage, along with many other requirements that many Americans have no need for and would choose to do without.
What about those 16 million or so Americans who lose their coverage? Who cares, right? Because it’s all for the greater good, socialism and Marxism on full display.
This president has lied to the American people from the first day he took office, when he placed his hand on the Bible and promised to uphold and defend the Constitution.
He is the most divisive president in American history. We are now more split along political, racial and class lines than at any time since the Civil War.
The compliant and sycophantic mainstream media has run cover for him since he campaigned in 2007. I truly fear for the survival of our constitutional republic. The pages of history will not be kind when evaluating the media’s role in sustaining, quite possibly, the worst two-term presidency in American history.
I was thrilled to see the Akron Aeros changed its name to RubberDucks. As for the uniforms, I wonder what color the team will choose for its blouses and skirts.