Letter: A divided America
Posted on Jan 29, 2014 - 01:07 PM Printer Friendly View
I recently received a business-as-usual reply from Sen. Tim Kaine in response to a letter of mine citing a number of my concerns involving changes in the Senate’s rules. The following are excerpts from my follow-up letter to Senator Kaine.
The public’s approval of Congress has reached new lows. According to the latest polls, Congress has an approval rating that is now down to 6 percent after hovering around 9 percent for a number of years. It has been determined that King George had about three times the level of support among the colonists during the Revolutionary War that Congress has now.
I hesitate to point out, especially in these times of NSA spying and IRS intimidation; however, a recent poll by Fairleigh Dickinson University found that 29 percent of registered voters believe that armed revolution may be necessary in the near future. This is about five times the number of people that think Congress is doing a good job.
A 2010 Rasmussen poll noted that only a small minority of the people think that the government has the consent of the governed. To put it bluntly, most Americans are afraid to talk about anything but the most safe topics. There is a fear of saying the wrong thing.
To give a sense of credibility to my expressed concerns, Rep. James Sensenbrenner, who, by the way, authored the so-called Patriot Act, now says the House and Senate Intelligence Committees that are supposed to operate as oversight watchdogs of government spy agencies have instead become cheerleaders for the NSA. He further added that legislation proposed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein to restrict the NSA is a joke that rubber stamps the agency’s current onslaught against the privacy rights of Americans.
Unfortunately, I do not believe in all of my 72 years that I have witnessed a time when the American people have been more alienated or divided culturally, socially and morally than they are at this point in time. This is not the America that I grew up in. Pat Buchanan recently asked the question: “Is Putin one of us?” This begs the question: If Putin and Russia are on the good side, just where is America at this point in time?
I closed my letter to Sen. Kaine with a thank you for his reply, but added, “I have concluded that you might not be fully aware of the sentiments of many Americans regarding the direction that America appears to be heading.” I thought it necessary to add in my closing comments, “Fortunately there is still a First Amendment right. How much longer that right continues remains to be seen.”
Dear editor, might I conclude with a reference to hope and change as has been so much used of late. I recall that both were used through the Russian Revolution as Communist slogans.
Port Haywood, Va.