Since last week’s column I’ve heard from many readers representing both parties who agree something must be done to get our elected officials and their respective parties to work together to address the issues facing the nation and spend less time focused on campaign elections and catering to vocal minority groups. If ever our voices are to be heard it’s during the next two-and-a-half months when they see so much at stake when running for office. We can do more than hope they are open to voter input as this is the time when they have a need from us. Their need is a vote and our need is to give them specific direction and then hold them accountable.
If our country were a household and the two political parties represented the responsible parents who make the decisions, and the voters represent the children of the household who depend on their parents to provide food, finances and a safe shelter, then clearly we have a very dysfunctional family unit. These two can’t agree on anything. It’s either time for a divorce or it’s time for the children to convince their parents to clean up their act and be the responsible adults they claim to be. We have allowed these parental figures far too much control over this relationship by sitting back and it’s time to let them know their behavior is no longer acceptable. At a time when we must either tell our children to not expect a better life then we enjoyed or start confronting those who run this country…well that choice of who to speak with seems very clear.
So what can we do in the short time we have left in this election season? I think we start by testing our ability to influence those decision makers running for office and the parties they represent. I believe we start by demanding that they stop these endless and stupid attack ads. Do we care that either side sees the other side as useless, selfish, drunken, lying, good-for-nothing bums, whores, killers or whatever else their sadistic ad people can conjure up? If we are ever going to influence a change we must demand that they tell us why they are qualified for the job and exactly what they plan to do, when they plan to do it and most importantly, how they will get the other side to go along with their plan, for without this component nothing will happen and we expect to see results. If they are unable to meet this standard, why in hell would we want to put them in charge and waste our time and money? If we, as the electorate, can’t make something as basic as this request happen during this highly charged, contested season, then we, as members of this nation, are really nothing more than pawns and we will never really have any say in the direction or tone of this government.
Dan Alexander is publisher and CEO of Denton Publications. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.