Thursday, February 18, 2010

Civility in Public Life

What is it with people in our society that have lost power? I'm thinking of a story I just read on Yahoo News about a "Tea Party" speaker from eastern Washington state who said a Democratic senator from her state should be hanged, then claimed her remarks were taken out of context. Out of context? Lady, if you said it, you should be so ashamed of yourself that you withdraw from public life completely!

We claim to be the best country in the world, but we have lost the sense of civility and the understanding that we only accomplish our full potential as a nation when we work together respectfully! When the so-called leaders of our government feel free to use such language, when one party or the other decides they will become obstructionist rather than loyal opposition, then we fall from our perceived lofty heights. If we, as a nation, want the world to look up to us, we need to rediscover what it means to be a nation that can reach out to all our many parts, we need political commentators that are able to see the good in persons of leadership rather than tearing at them and their positions like mad beasts, we need to stop seeing surface things like skin color, party affiliation, gender, mental or physical ability, or even sexual orientation or religion - WE NEED TO SEE THE PERSON - and accept them as another member of our great big extended family - because we all know we don't get along perfectly with our family members, but we still love them and seek to keep good relationships with them. That also needs to be part of our civil discourse!

I have been a member of both the Republican and Democratic party, and I've complained about the actions of both. But I have never been more ashamed of a political party than I am right now with the Republican Party that has become, truthfully, the party of NO! And how they can continue to let hate-mongers like Limbaugh and Beck and O'Reilly to speak for them, fill their public image with insane, unthinking and unceasing lies about what is currently happening in our country - I'll never understand. There are bad people in both parties, and no politician is every above the law - though some obviously think they are - so we truly need, as citizens and voters, to show that we will no longer stand for those who deal in hate, lies and deceit. When a politician lies, cheats, or is shown to be in the pocket of special interest, we need to vote them out of office!

My father became so disenchanted with politicians years ago that he stated would no longer vote for and incumbent, because incumbents seemed to always be in the pocket of someone. I'm not ready to go there, but I do believe we need to send a strong message to Washington and our state capitals that we will no longer tolerate the current climate of hate and distrust. I do not believe Evan Byah was doing his best for the country this last little while, but I do believe his comments about voters needed to send a stronger message to Washington, specifically the Senate.

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