It’s practically impossible to turn on television without watching something to do with the candidates for the election next year. Too much is, “He said, she said.” Of course, anybody who reads my column regularly knows that this old lady is a former Democrat who is now a conservative voter.
My father was always interested in politics. He instilled in my sister Jeanne and I the fact that what our “representatives” did was important. That word “representative” is what our politicians are, friends, make no mistake. Unfortunately, whenever I talk about “politics,” people tell me they don’t get involved with politics. My reply is while they may not get involved in politics, politics will get involved with them whether they like it or not.
Why is it that so many, many citizens of this wonderful country don’t understand that the people they put in office represent them as their voice on what happens? Why don’t they understand that those politicians are going to vote on bills that will benefit or in some way touch their lives in issues that all of us should be aware of? Don’t they really care that their tax bills could double?
Some legislation passes that will be detrimental to their very lives, and some may even be against what they consider their moral values? Perhaps it’s just too easy to ignore the news channels on television or what they read in the newspaper and just watch cooking shows or sitcoms instead?
I first began to vote in 1946 when Harry Truman took office after Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who, believe it or not, served almost four terms.
Looking back, I was about seven when FDR first became president. There were no terms limits then. When he passed away I was married and had my first son. In those days I voted Democratic. While I did check the who, what and where, I wasn’t as tuned into what was happening in our government as I should have been. But I never just voted a blank ticket; I checked the people and the issues.
Not many people who read this column have voted so long as I have. I do recall some of those who took the highest office in America who should have stayed home. Some were a big disappointment and others did a fine job. Who can forget Jimmy Carter, that sweet, unassuming man who should have stayed back on his peanut farm? Interest rates went so high people couldn’t buy a home, a car, anything.
After Truman was Eisenhower. He put in the Interstate highway that has proved so beneficial. Who can forget Nixon? Like a damned fool, instead of admitting his associates were crooks, he lied about it, thus costing him the presidency. Clinton’s reign wasn’t too bad, except for his woman problems. Of course, there were the Bushes, After 9/11 I knew we had to do something about our enemies, but I wasn’t entirely in favor of the war.
However, once committed, the Obama administration erased most that had been gained by pulling our troops out way too soon, creating the present problems in the Mideast. Now we come to what is happening today and yes, the reason why I’m so adamant about understanding politics. This is the question I would love to ask anybody who voted for the present president. Just what were this man’s qualifications? OK, I’m waiting.
The fact is, Obama had very few as a community organizer / college professor, before being elected to the United States Senate. Shortly afterward, he was running for president. We were promised a new era of cooperation, a time of “Hope and Change.” Many prayed that this administration would bring about great things. Be honest, are we really better off today then seven years ago?
Now, while watching television, I can see clearly that the majority of people in this country don’t know a thing about what’s happening in our government, or in the world. We have never — not since WWII — been in such a terrible place and had so many problems as we have now while most of our citizenry is sitting watching sitcoms with no idea of what could happen at any moment.
We could lose the very life we so enjoy as citizens of this beautiful country by simply sticking our heads tucked in the sand as the world is destroyed around us and the enemy is at our gates. Wake up, study the issues, and vote your
Edna Van Leuven is a Churchill County writer and columnist. She may be reached at email@example.com