In his 1796 farewell address to the people of the United States of America, George Washington discussed, among other matters, his concern sectionalism and political parties were a danger to our government and to the country as a whole. His concern was prophetic. If one examines today’s America, it’s polarized by various factors including economic status, race and religion. How did America get to such a state? Political parties and candidates for public office played a huge role in these outcomes by advancing trade policies which undermined the middle class (think Ronald Reagan and his “trickle down economic” policies and Bill and Hillary Clinton and the North American Free Trade Agreement); using racial issues to get elected to office (think Richard Nixon’s Southern Strategy in 1968 and 1972); and banning all Muslim travel to the USA (think Donald Trump). Given the realities and effects of these policies or intentions, no wonder the United States is hampered by political gridlock, division, derision and “do nothing” politicians of both major political parties. Are the voters angry? You bet, and their best hope of alleviating these problems is to vote their conscious and own self-interest and ignore the scare tactics of both Republicans and Democrats who got them into this mess.
Robert Blevins, Garden City
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Idaho Statesman