America is stuck on stupid when it comes to the so-called terrorism scare and like the pimps that they are, candidates for elective office in Washington D.C. are preying on and exploiting the worst fears of the uninformed masses. It’s a shame when so much more is at stake.
With the exception of Bernie Sanders – who doesn’t have a shot because Americans are brand loyal and can’t fathom endorsing a socialist – none of the major presidential candidates are addressing employment, gun control, social justice, education, the economy or health.
When did common sense, logic, compassion and humanity jump ship? Or were they thrown overboard? In either case, we are treading perilous waters with hatred, narrow-mindedness and idiocy navigating our course. Need confirmation, replay this week’s Republican presidential debate; fortunately the last before the first primaries in 2016.
Even though the designated subject focused on international affairs, the venomous spirit of their disrespect for the Commander in Chief screamed racism and hinted treason. When in such turbulent times can you recall this kind of condemnation and desertion of the leader of the free world?
At one point in the debate, Chris “The Overweight Hater” Christie referred to President Barack Obama as a “feckless weakling.” Feckless. Defined as lacking character, responsibility, and competence. Synonyms: slothful, good-for-nothing, lazy, idle, indolent, worthless, no-good, shiftless, useless.
That’s the president he is disparaging. Not in the worst days of George W. Bush, whose track record merited decidedly more rancor, was there such animosity for the top office in the land. No one is confused. Such reckless disregard for the presidency stems from bigotry.
And those in the media, government or everyday life who sit idly by with no commentary of condemnation for such antipathy are just as guilty.
But let’s get back to the initial point. We know that when it comes to the mental and moral limitations of politicians without conscience, it is what it is.
Rather than dote on their rants of rancor, let’s refocus on the critical missing rhetoric of this ridiculous campaign – that is, discussion of anything pertinent to the quality of life and standards of living in America. That total neglect is most shameful of all.
Employment and the economy may seem redundant as an issue. They are not. If you don’t believe it – talk to some of the fast food chain workers and major retail chain employees working long hours every week but not making enough to make ends meet and often lacking benefits. The minimum wage, health care costs, and other vital economic factors are critical matters.
Improving employment, and consequently economic prowess, more often than not depends on another area of neglect – education. How many candidates have clearly delineated their plan to improve pre-school through post-graduate learning in this country? Who has placed the cost of education and forgiveness for student college debts on their agenda? No one.
Social justice is the elephant in the room. This year is coming to an end with an ominous record number of brutal and shocking nationally-publicized incidents of discrimination predicated on race, color, religion or other unique distinctions. Voices of intolerance are rising in the streets but can barely be heard among government policy makers.
The cost and capacity to receive quality physical and mental health care are more prominent challenges than they have been in years. Though much lip-service is dedicated to health issues (especially in a crisis situation) – few sustainable, far-reaching strategies are offered by those with the power to initiate change.
With the disturbing rate of gun deaths in the U.S. this year, the need to be aggressive and decisive in tackling this concern is indisputable. So is the cowardice and acquiescence of elected officials fearful of the ruthless National Rifle Association and the possible consequences of standing for what is right.
There are many more domestic imperatives we need to address at this critical juncture, but we can’t even get serious about the primary challenges. Instead, we talk about ISIS and terrorism as though they were the only concerns for Americans in 2016.
ISIS won’t repossess the car, turn out the lights or gas, empty the refrigerators and tables, deny tuition money, cause eviction when mortgages or rent can’t be paid, subject a man to second-class citizenship by law enforcement, perpetuate discrimination in society or allow the eventual demise of millions who suffer maladies for which they could easily have been saved if anyone really cared,
No, those terrors in our lives won’t be ISIS.
That will be US.
CIRCLE CITY CONNECTION by Vernon A. Williams is a series of essays on myriad topics that include social issues, human interest, entertainment and profiles of difference makers who are forging change in a constantly evolving society. Williams is a 40-year veteran journalist based in Indianapolis, IN – commonly referred to as The Circle City.
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