Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Big Question

What’s next? This is the question on everyone’s minds in the wake of the elections that give Democrats control of the House and possibly the Senate. And the resignation of Donald Rumsfeld (see, I spelled it right this time - I freely admit to spelling deficiencies).

Here is my fervent hope and dream: That we stop fighting. That the Right can take a deep breath, realize that the election of so many moderates is WE THE PEOPLE’S (you know – the people you represent) way of sending you a message. We do not like the atmosphere that has been pervading our country the last five or six years. We are tired of the fighting. Step back, get in touch with the people who elected you and listen.

That the left, the Democrats who now head to Congress to take the lead. Do NOT GLOAT. Do NOT allow the power to go to your heads. Remember why WE THE PEOPLE put you there: because we want solutions, we want movement, we want the country reunited for the common good. Reach out to the other side and get to work on finding common ground that moves us forward.

To the media (especially Fox and CNN, but really ALL of them) stop using politics as a ratings booster. Stop pandering and encouraging infighting and division and hatred and misunderstanding. Be the professional journalists you are supposed to be. Where are your investigative reporters? Where are your in-depth (half hour, hour long) stories that explore important issues and calmly and factually show all sides of said issue? Why are you wasting 24 hours a day on screaming, yelling, half stories and pretty talking heads who don’t know what the hell they are talking about, only that they are supposed to stir up controversy so that people will tune in?

To the people, find out how to contact your state and national leaders and find their email addresses. Google it, for Pete’s sake, it’s right there, you don’t even have to know their names, just “senate representative for insert-state-here” will do. Write to them, tell them what you would like them to do. I know there are so many issues and it is hard to keep up, but pick one or two that are close to your heart and learn about them, keep track of what your representatives are doing about them. Give them feedback.

Nothing is going to change unless we demand it, and that is what this election was about. But old habits are so easy to slip back into and if we don’t keep our representatives focused on who they are there for, we will slip right back to the old ways.

If you aren’t registered to vote – do so now. Please. Please. Pretty please with sugar on top?

We'll be watching you!


Agricola said...

Nice post, and much that all can agree with. I would just like to add that, personally, I have always found that the best idea is the one that results from discussion of opposing views, allowing the formation of a synthesis that is better than the the original theses. Not an original idea, I admit, but perhaps a plea for all us to engage in reasoned discussion in lieu of close-minded name calling. Where do we start?

JanetLee said...

How about this as a start? The rest of the world has been increasingly against our involvement in Iraq. Why don't we use this change in power to approach the U.N. and the rest of our allies and ask their help in resolving this? Get some support in the transition of power in Iraq.

Agricola said...

In the spirit of discussion, I would offer the notion that the UN has a demonstrated record of failure in either fostering the growth of democratic governments or resolving conflict. As proof of my assertion, consider the composition of the UN Human Rights Commission, and the inablity of UN peacekeepers to maintain peace in The Congo, Lebanon, or even the lack of will in Darfur. Instead, I propose that we attempt to work more closely with the key players in the region; but I am again reminded of the ancient quote that Man operates with only 3 motivations: fear, self-interest, and honor. In the region, honor appears only fleetingly, so we must appeal to their understandings of fear and self interest. I'll agree the situation is a mess. But, I'm not sure anyone else in the region really wants a solution whose key outcome is the freedom of all Iraqis.