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America’s Political Landscape Stalled by Public Apathy

In Business, Economy, Jobs, Local News, National News, Opinion, Politics, State News, Uncategorized on February 21, 2012 at 10:42 am

By Gery L. Deer

Deer In Headlines


When considering the country’s currents political and economic state a great deal hinges on some pretty ignorant, uninformed and out of touch people – the American voters. People sit and blame the president, congress and their neighbor’s dog for just about everything that’s wrong with our country, but the best place to start looking for problems is in the mirror. After all, it’s the public who voted them in and only the voters can change the political landscape.

There is an unfortunate tendency in our country (and it’s growing) to want someone else to solve our problems for us. I’ve written countless times on the subject of self-accountability but people still want bailouts and tea parties to make the world right. And if you’re unhappy with what’s going on, but refuse to vote or choose to ignore the facts about candidates and issues, your problems are your own making.

When considering election issues or choosing a candidate, we tend to go with our heart, not our head. I realize that touchy and deeply personal issues like abortion, religious freedom and marital regulation are important to some people but I don’t believe they should be the leading factor that determines which lever to pull on Election Day.

Moral issues, while significant, affect a smaller percentage of the population at any given time than would the economy, civil rights or tax concerns. And, despite White House reports to the contrary, we’re still in the midst of continuing economic troubles and we would be better to first focus on potential solutions for those tribulations.

For example, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels recently signed the first right-to-work law enacted in the area known as the Rust Belt, a stronghold for union-represented work forces. The new law makes it illegal to force employees to join a union or pay union dues. Twenty-two other states have similar laws already on the books – andOhiomay be next.

The concept is an effort to make it easier to get a job and for companies to be able to afford to pay workers instead of being strong-armed by over-reaching unions. Some see it as an attack on unions and an attempt to diminish wages and benefits.

Whatever your point of view on the subject, right-to-work legislation is one of those issues that can affect a great number of people and in more ways than people realize at first. The trickle-down, economic and political repercussions from laws like this can impact entire communities, even the whole state.

At the water cooler, discussions about these issues tend to segue into confrontational debates over ineffectual politicians. Ironically, with all that debate, most people never learn one thing more than they’ve already decided about a candidate right up to the time they walk into the polling place.

Many people are voting for the lesser of, “who cares,” but in fact, we need to be more choosey about who we are sending toWashington. While Democrats are stuck with President Obama in the fall, Republicans should have stood up to demand better options than mud-slinging hairdos like Romney and Santorum. In my amateur opinion, none of the Republican frontrunners carries a strong challenge to the president in November.

Each of us needs to make the effort to separate our feelings from the facts and do our best to approve issues and candidates that will best serve the greater good, not just those that pander to the Left or Right to get votes.

In the end, the fate of the country depends on the voters; those diligent, savvy individuals who, more times than not, make the choice in the voting booth based solely on a commercial they saw on television the night before. Could it really be that apathetic a decision for some people? I think it is and that’s why we can only blame ourselves.


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