If there were more time, each and every one of these idiot House members should be forced to go to their district, rent at their own expense a commodious enough hall, and have an open meeting with constituents who can grill them with Reality Questions, such as, "Do you know how much a pound of hamburger costs here?" and "Do you know how much it costs to fill up the average family car with gasoline?" and "What the goddam hell is it that I am paying you to do in Washington and why in the holy hell are you doing something else?" and "What are you, a big fucking idiot?" And that moron should have to stand--oh, yes, by heaven--STAND there and answer every single question, no matter if he/she is there until noon the next day. Or the next.
But, of course, there is no time. Because we are Governing By Panic Button. And, by "We", of course I mean the republicans. Please do not sprinkle rose petals on my path and Pollyanna at me by saying, "Oh, now. It's both parties' fault. Everyone is to blame. Both sides need to come together and yadda yadda blah blah blah." If you do that, be prepared for me to smack the everloving shit right out of you. Because you are also a big idiot. It is not both parties' fault. Do the Democrats want to go back in time like a science fiction character and change a four-year-old law that has already been declared constitutionally sound by The United States Supreme Court? That's really the only example that is germane here. Which party is known as The Party Of No? Which party touted itself as having an agenda as Jobs Jobs Jobs, yet held more than thirty-five meaningless votes--that they knew would go nowhere--to abolish the Affordable Care Act? Where are the Jobs Jobs Jobs?
Some people with Jobs Jobs Jobs lost them because of the Sequester, brought to you, ultimately, by the republicans, who are happy because it contains their favorite thing, spending cuts. It was another game of chicken before another debt ceiling fight, and they begrudgingly cut defense spending as long as a bunch of other cuts were made. Oh well, they said. At least we tightened America's Belt.
Now, thanks to the republicans and their inbred cousins, the teapartiers, we are in the kind of position that makes me aghast and ashamed. It's the same way I felt when I watched with ever-increasing horror the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Every moment of news coverage, every day, I stared at footage and reports with wide eyes and gaping mouth. I kept repeating the same questions over and over again, "How is this my country? How is this happening in America?"
I'm saying the same thing now. It was with complete and utter disbelief that I listened to the report that America, The United States of America, had to accept charity in order to pay the death benefits to the surviving families of fallen troops. And then the reporter said, "This will ease the pressure on both sides, giving them a little more time to work towards an agreement now that this has been taken care of." Ease the pressure? I would think it would increase the pressure, knowing that this country cannot even take care of the people who "gave the last full measure of devotion" in service to their country. It's appalling. The United States of America goes begging like a street urchin.
What on earth has happened to my country? Who are these people sitting in Washington D.C.? Have they no conscience? Have they no loyalty to anything but themselves and their screwed-up ideologies? Have they no responsibility to those of us who live here and work here and care about what it means to be an American? Have they no sense of history? No love of this country and the men and women who have fought and still fight for it?
I think all of them--but most especially the republicans--need to read something. It's something that will remind them why they are there. It's not to advance their own stature or to get a plum committee assignment so that they can puff up their resumes to run for something else. It's not to advance their personal biases and prejudices to a national platform. And it's not to create chaos and headlines to stroke their ego. It's about how government and democracy are hard-won. It reminds them that people other than them do the dirty work of freedom. It reminds them that democracy is somehow always fledgling, and it needs care to grow and flourish. It won't take long; it's less than 275 words. Send it to your representative and remind him/her that it's your America, too. Go, read.