On November 4, 2014, US citizens voted in the 2014 midterm elections. Dependent on the state, we cast votes for members of Congress, gubernatorial candidates, special Senate and House elections and various ballot measures. Texans headed to the polls on Tuesday and I was in the queue with them. Our polling place is a mere block from our home. My husband and I headed to the polls together. It is a privilege to cast a vote. My leanings are centrist except for a hard pull to the right regarding issues that I deem societal ills. Republicans are not lacking in compassion regarding the human condition. We do not engage a in “war on women”, a malicious script deployed by the Democrats.
Let me make a bold prediction. If necessary, I will fall on my own (marshmallow) sword should my crowing be premature. The Republican Party (GOP) will take charge. Yep. I predict a healthy stomping of the Democratic Party before the moon crests across the horizon. It is not any one thing that will cause the political tide to change. It is everything. We the people have put up with a lot. US citizens can be forbearing to a fault but when our sensibilities are sufficiently battered we go to the polls and say “Enough!”
Enough! Enough of the corruption within the federal branch. The power of the purse has been abused by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Lois Lerner walks her dog. She is not behind bars. Citizens mull dark thoughts. Senior level federal employees rarely go to prison. Why not? Why does the average man go to prison whilst the elitists get shuffled around to different departments when caught in the act of abuse of official capacity? It must be the unspoken part of a benefit package when signing on for their jobs. Do the bidding of the president. You will be rewarded.
The power of the department of justice is used to erode freedom of the press and intimidate professional reporters. There is a noticeable pattern of intimidation and threat against journalists who are not owned by the White House. Reporters who break big stories minus the White House script and who choose to maintain confidentiality of sources are persona non grata. Freedom of the press is in great danger. The 82nd attorney general of the US protects the current administration and denies citizens the campaign vow of “transparency”. I do not like elected officials who deal dishonestly with “we the people”. The Barack Obama campaign promise of transparency was a whopper of a lie. Eric Holder is like the whale that swallowed Jonah. Except, in this case, the department of justice whale refuses to spit out any given journalist after three days. The most ethical of souls are pursued with legal persecution, character assassination and monitoring of movements via digital tracking.
Enough! We want to rid ourselves of policymakers who have lost touch with what it means to be part of a tax-burdened middle class. It reminds me of remarks made during a debate between political opponents. “The first time a man is elected, it is by the people. The second time, he is elected by special interests.” The alienation factor between officials and their constituents is duly noted in plummeting congressional approval ratings.
Enough! Our votes during the midterm will reflect as a proxy vote against the president of the US. Perhaps the biggest failure of President Obama is his desire to maintain the legend that he is a world leader. Here’s the deal: be a great national leader and the world will look to you. Seek to lead the world and ignore your own people and the legend dissipates into thin air. A world leader is recognised based on his strong leadership at home. President Obama has chosen to dabble in global humanitarian crises to the detriment of his own citizens. He has taken humanitarian relief to a level that has functioned as a boomerang, bringing affliction to the US public. Tens of thousands of unvaccinated children were allowed to flood across our southern border in recent months. Ninety-seven percent of the measles outbreak in the US in 2014 can be traced back to importation from at least 18 nations. When public schools opened their doors in August, my country felt the impact of unprecedented levels of infectious disease and severe respiratory illnesses. We have critically disabling cases of Enterovirus D68 with over 1,000 children affected and 10 percent of these children suffering from paralysis due to this viral attack. From soccer to residing in a wheelchair? Thank you, Mr President!
Humanitarian concerns must benefit our own citizens first. Anything less is a violation of the oath of office. A healthy workforce is the key to a healthy economic bottom line. How many days of work have been missed by parents with a sick child in ICU? How many days will be missed shuttling children to physical therapy? How many parents merely pulled out of the workforce because of a child with a case of Enterovirus D 68?
Earlier, the bold pronouncement was that the GOP would take charge. Actually, things will probably move along as usual. Public officials work tirelessly to remain in office. The rest of us pony up for their salaries, bloated staff contingencies and luxury perks. But one thing is certain regarding the US’s political climate. Changes do come in an incremental manner. And the best changes start at the polls. Our voting patterns resemble the pendulum of a clock. Too hard a swing to the right sets the stage for a later swing to the left. But the swing toward the left has been a strong one for the past six years. How far are voters willing to go? Will there be a wild swing to the right? I sincerely hope for it! We need balance. My marshmallow sword is in hand.
The writer is a freelance journalist and author of the novel Arsenal. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org