Full Video of the 1st 2012 Presidential Debate Between Obama and Romney

If you didn’t get to see the first 2012 Presidential Debate live between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney you can watch it here. There is analysis of this debate all over the just about any kind of media you can think of. There are tons of different political views from every side and every viewpoint so I am not going to get into it now. I just wanted to make sure there was another avenue for voters to see the video and to try to form their opinions.

After you have wanted the debate, which I think every responsible voter should, make sure that you then troll through a few of the good fact check sites that we have listed here on PeoplePolitico.com. It’s important to know where President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney stretched, distorted, or otherwise blatantly lied about the truth of their own or the others policies and stances on social political issues.

National Voter Registration Day

national-voter-registration-dayToday is national voter registration day! Make sure that you are registered to vote so you can participate in the upcoming presidential election. No matter who you are, what your political affiliation is, you should be absolutely sure that you are registered and ready to vote.

It is our belief here at People Politco that everyone that is eligible to vote should vote. It can be hard to be excited or be involved in politics. However, it is something that affects us all. It may not feel like it does at times but the decisions and actions our politicians takes directly affects us so in turn we all need to be directly involved in politics.

There have been a flurry of voter laws that have passed recently to purge out registrations voter eligibility. Regardless of your thoughts on this recent voter purge it is absolutely vital that each and every one of us makes sure we are registered and ready to vote.

I have already re-registered. Despite my constant participation in elections and making sure that I was active and up to date these voter purges has affected me and my house hold. I say this because I want everyone to make sure they register to vote. Even if you are pretty sure that you are, make sure you go and verify that you are still registered to vote. It has been amazing how many people that I know have been actively involved in the elections have had their names removed from being eligible voters.

Most states have a place you can check your voter registration. You should be able to just search for voter registration in your state. This should get you started. It is very easy with most states and will only take a few minutes.

Just make sure that you do not hesitate to get registered to vote. Each state has different deadlines but all of them are coming up. So get out there and make sure that your get registered to vote. While you’re at it make sure that those in your household, your friends and co-workers register to vote as well.

The more each and every one of us participate in this democratic America the more democratic it will truly become.


Disturbing Political Trend in Truth

collums-and-stairsThe closer we get to the 2012 Presidential Election the more crazy distortions of the truth I see. I know that perspectives are skewed and manipulated during the heated and often ugly run up to the general elections, but it seems like the preposterous rantings of what were once the loonies on the fringes are becoming the battle cries of the leaders of the parties.

Where once we frowned on unfounded accusations and scoffed at the baseless ramblings of the extremely paranoid or deranged, now we the people as a whole seem to latch onto them as truth, as brave, as somehow heroes that are standing up to some fantastical conceived threat.

I am not really sure how or why we have become so accepting of the blatant lies, abuse, misdirection, misinformation, and outright name calling that has become such a normal part of our everyday life.

Maybe it has been the years of dirty and low down politics. Maybe getting nasty every election became the new normal. We never got over the hateful rhetoric and over the years this strange morality creep gets worse and worse and we barely notice it.

It has gotten so bad that those who advocate these insane stances are held as the “truth bringers” and those that refute these idiotic statements are challenged to prove it’s not true. However, no accusation, should be accepted as truth unless it is grounded in independently verifiable facts.

Take the whole Birther issue. Some far right fringe lunatics came up with this ridiculous idea and for some reason it gained so much traction that President Obama thought it necessary to take time out of dealing with American’s real problems to present his birth certificate that clearly, without a doubt, proves that he is an American. Then, after months and months of these crazies saying all they need to do is see it, when they do see it, they still don’t believe it.

Our society has allowed itself to be manipulated into focusing on whatever nonsense is going on right now instead of focusing on the very real and troubling issues that America faces.

I am shocked, appalled, and embarrassed to see so many Americans get caught up in this drama. I am not proud to say that I have also fallen victim to the insane crap these politicians and pundits are shoveling on us.

This is not going to stop until we as a nation stand up and shout to our politicians and pundits that all political discourse must be based on fact and reason, and hold our media accountable for covering the facts, not the crazies.

We also must make sure that we keep each other on track because it is so easy to get distracted by the little stuff, the crazy ramblings or the issues that simply do not exist. We need to watch each others’ backs because our political system is not doing that now. We need to respectively and honestly work with each other to stay on track and stay on topic.

We have to look America, each other, and our political system objectively, factually, and critically for us to have any chance of growing as a nation.

We must not re-elect those that waste our time with nonsense. We must turn the channel, page, or URL when the media gives imagination more coverage than reality.

We need jobs and healthcare. Right now millions of Americans are without both.

We need fair and easy taxes. Right now income and taxation disparity between Americans is at a record high.

We need honesty and integrity within our society. Right now we allow the misinformation and lies to rot our core.

We need to have a prosperous and cutting edge America that is once again a contender for greatest nation in the world. Right now, we are falling short, terribly short, of what our forefathers had hoped for. We can’t allow America to be that country that can only work together when things like 9/11 happen.

America’s issues can be solved, but not until we all decide to be honest and respectful. We must pledge to have an open mind with everything we see and hear. We must vow to think objectively and critically.

I make this pledge to myself and to you. I ask that you do the same for yourself. Then together, regardless of sex, age, religion, or any other affiliation we can all push forward to a better, brighter America.

Invisible Mitt Romney at the Democratic National Convention?

steaming-pileNow that the Republican National Convention is finished, we are left wondering what the heck just happened. It seems all the DNC needs to do now is to try not to feature a senile rant at an empty chair. Who knows what this convention has up its sleeve? It seems we as a nation have lost grip with reality, and in many cases, sanity.

Why is it that so many people are so loyal to one party or the other? It’s as if the political parties are family and they cannot fathom disloyalty to that party, even when that family member lies, cheats, and steals. For some reason so many feel that they still need to defend a political party, along with every bit of their platform, with their last breath.

The real question I have is why did the Republican National Convention find it so important to blatantly lie to the party’s faithful? The unapologetic lies should disgust anyone with a shred of decency.  Sure, more than just Republicans heard some of what was said at the RNC, but the message at these conventions is aimed at energizing the Republican base. And shouldn’t their base hear facts from their leaders?

Politicians have always twisted the truth or omitted some information in order to make a point (or a sound byte). But it seems like they used to take some pride in having some measure of truth in their speeches. Now, they’re just making up lies and hoping no one catches them in order to justify their viewpoint. Then they scramble for excuses when they are called out on those lies.

Why are they doing this? Either they are trying to deceive their own supporters—people who are already planning to vote for them, or they are either so incompetent or lazy that they can’t be bothered with ensuring the veracity of their own speeches. If a person can search “closed auto plants”, that person should also be able to check what year that plant closed, and who was president at the time. Or if time is short, just typing Factcheck.org can help save some fumbling and backpedalling later.

Since I can’t handle the idea of listing all the lies that were told at the Republican National Convention, you might want to check out one of the fact checking websites to get an idea. They are able to be diplomatic and call it “exaggeration” and “misleading” instead of “stinking mounds of manure”.

I am really hoping that the Democratic National Convention takes the same appalled view I had of the Republican’s convention and decides to take the high road. It seems that America needs to be reminded that President Obama took the reins at one of the worst economic times in America’s history, and that his attempts at bipartisanship were met with scorn, and his compromises were met with anger from both sides of the aisle. He has accomplished much, and those things he could not accomplish were because Republicans blocked him so many times—even on legislation they were previously in favor of, and on legislation that was favored by the majority of Americans, regardless of party affiliation. Perhaps they just need to be reminded that the Republicans’ number one priority for the past four years has been making sure President Obama doesn’t receive a second term in office.

They say fight fire with fire, but I am not sure how to fight bat shit crazy. However, I think if we can all donate a chair to a progress-blocking representative, we can let them shout at it for the next few years while we try to continue to repair the horrible damage they did to America and the rest of the world.

Flipping the Issue on Women’s Health Care

people-politico-i-want-youAt times I find myself amazed, confused and simply dumbfounded by the sheer amount of ignorant rhetoric that is spewed out by our politicians in defense of idiotic, sexist, racist, and amoral political ideals and political policies.

The particular political issue that has gained so much ground is the recent attack on women’s health care and health services. It boggles my mind that so many can so easily dismiss decades of health care advances. It seems ridiculous to even suggest some of these things let alone honestly campaign and push legislation to legitimatize these fringe ideas.

However, I realized that maybe it doesn’t seem insane to those that cannot comprehend women’s health care or the system that so many have tried so hard to get in place for them. Even with all of these health services, women’s health falls way behind that of men’s health care. There’s a debate about whether rape victims should receive care but erectile dysfunction is covered without question in men’s health care.

So I thought if we flipped the political issue around, maybe then it would help give us a more appropriate perspective. I find that looking at the other side of things can often help to give a valuable point of view.

Men’s Health Care – Draining a Nation

For far too long we have wasted billions of dollars on insurance premiums for men’s health care. There are several areas I can identify which would save us all money.

End Vasectomies

Not only are vasectomies an affront to the natural order of things they are also incredibly costly. Vasectomies are so common that anyone can stop by their doctor’s office, grab a vasectomy, and then head off to a weekend of infidelity or even (shall I say it?) responsible sex. If we pass legislation to severely limit, and in many cases eliminate vasectomies, we will not only be saving a lot of money each year, we will also be able to stop the deviant behavior of men who have easy access to vasectomies. Men should not be having sex except to procreate anyway, so why is this procedure necessary?

In the extreme case that a man does want a vasectomy, the option could still possibly be available, perhaps in a more “liberal” state. After taking a class about the hazards of vasectomies, the patient would need to submit to a trans-rectal proctologic ultrasound exam to determine his health and sign a form indicating that he agrees that he is a horrible person for taking charge of his own reproductive future.

Stop Wasting Our Money On Drugs

For far too long, we as a nation have subsidized our male neighbors’ drug habits. We must, once and for all, put an end to the distribution and use of erectile dysfunction medication. Erectile dysfunction is a contrived term by the drug industry to push drugs out to millions of men.

Insurance companies should no longer cover this drug and people with erectile dysfunction should be classified properly as sex addicts in need of rehab. If they are found to have legitimate issues, and aren’t just dirty sluts, then it’s just a sign from “on high” that they shouldn’t be so immoral.

Make It Illegal for Businesses to Cover Men’s Birth Control

Even though very few men take on the responsibility themselves to have birth control, there are a few that do, and science may someday make it easier. For those few who do take their reproductive responsibility seriously, we need to make sure that they have an incredibly difficult time getting insurance, and if they do it should be very expensive for them. Insurance companies should pay for the birth and care of their unplanned children instead of the vastly cheaper cost of preventing unwanted pregnancy.

Stop Covering the Treatment and Management of STD’s

Let’s face it; if a guy gets an STD, he deserves it. Because he was obviously acting irresponsibly and he got what he deserves. However, the poor woman who gave him the STD should have the treatment covered by insurance. As mentioned earlier, men are dirty sluts, but women… well, girls will be girls, am I right?

Sexual Education

All sexual education programs need to be eliminated. Millions are wasted every year helping to teach men sexual education and sexual responsibility.

The best way to handle this topic that no one wants to talk about is to pretend it doesn’t exist. If sex doesn’t exist then we do not need to teach our children about it. We can just handle it like that troublesome evolution thing: put your fingers in your ears and say, LA LA LA! That should take care of it.

Outlaw All Sexual Adult Establishments

When it comes right down to it, all of the above problems can be totally avoided if there is nothing to enable this sick, deviant behavior of a sexually active male. We all know that if there were no gentlemen’s clubs, pay per view channels, or triple fold outs in magazines there would be nothing to worry about.

So as long as we make sure to criminalize PG-13ish content and above we will no longer be enabling men to cause this tremendous burden on our society. And our country will be saved. Be sure to encourage violent behavior in our young males, however. After all, they will need to blow off some steam.

To The Ladies

And don’t you worry, women of America. You are the favored gender. You are entitled to all the health care you could ever ask for, all the drugs to increase your pleasure, and there is no question that you have the right to make decisions about your body, your health, and your future. Of course, those choices are between you and your doctor! The government would never dream of interfering with these decisions. It’s the men that are the problem. We have to keep those dirty sluts in line.

Voter Fraud: More Evidence of No Evidence

voter-infoI saw this article last weekend on NBC news. It has a some good, detailed information regarding the big drive to pass voter fraud bills. Again we find, as has been obvious in many other reports, that voter fraud at the polls is so minute and inconsequential that it should outrage all Americans that our politicians are wasting the valuable time they have to try to tackle an issue that doesn’t even exist.

Not only did this article dive deep into the entire issue of voter fraud, it used the raw data collected by News21 and their new database to illustrate just how inconsequential in-person, at the polls, voter fraud is. The number of actual cases is somewhere near the 1000th’s of a percent range. That is .001%.

All the voter fraud legislation will effect around 10% of the population, effectively stripping them of the right to vote in the coming general election unless they take extra action to assure that they are still registered and able to vote. Many of these voters are not even aware that these laws have taken effect, taking away their ability to vote in future elections. That does not sound very patriotic to me!

I have actually been a victim of this legislation. I was surprised to learn that the legislation in my area had removed me from the eligible voter list. Even though I do not fit into any of the “main demographics” that are going to be affected by the voter suppression legislation. As frustrating as that is, it is easy to re-register.

So your first order of business is to make sure that you register to vote again. It only takes a minute and it will save you frustration come election day. As Americans it is our duty to vote, every single one of us.

Here are some places you can use online to register to vote:

Next, check out this very interesting and educational article regarding voter fraud legislation and suppression:

If you want to jump right into the voter fraud database go here:

Now, contact your representative and demand that they spend their time on actual real life issues that actually affect Americans before they start a six week debate about the best way to legislate free roaming unicorns and to determine if they are subject to restrictions in state boundaries.


2012 Presidential Debate Schedule

people-politico-president-barack-obama-debatingThe Presidential Debates have been scheduled and their formats and topics have been chosen for the 2012 Presidential Election season.

I always look forward to these Presidential Debates because we get to see what the candidates are going to say and they are put on the spot, and face to face, with all of the political rhetoric that they have been firing at each other for months. Not only do they have to answer the questions that are presented by the debate moderator they often slip these other counter points into their responses. More often than not it seems to draw the presidential candidates into a more real and genuine response instead of those that are tailored by their publicist.

The Republicans have Mitt Romney as their candidate this year and I really do not feel that he is going to be up to the challenge of truly and honestly competing with President Obama at the podium. These Presidential Debates should be very interesting and unless Mitt Romney begins to truly solidify his platform beyond the catch phrases he is going to be in a world of trouble come these Presidential Debates.

I have discussed these Presidential Debates with many others and they seem to feel that though President Obama will likely dominate the Presidential Debates they are not going to be nearly as interesting as they might have been with Rick Perry or Herman Cain. Both of which have incredibly interesting personalities which may have been far more entertaining. What are your thoughts on these debates?

Regardless of who you are supporting in the upcoming elections it is important to watch these as they should help you forge your opinions come the general election. Mitt Romney is going to have to get studying and practicing for these debates because he is going up against a skilled and seasoned challenger who many agree is a master of debating.

2012 Presidential Debate Information

The Commission on Presidential Debates has announced the formats for the 2012 presidential and vice presidential debates, each of which will be 90-minutes long. Moderators will be selected in August.

  • First presidential debate: October 3, University of Denver, Colorado: Domestic issues, questions selected by moderator.
  • Vice presidential debate: October 11, Centre College, Danville, Kentucky: Domestic and foreign issues, questions selected by moderator.
  • Second presidential debate: October 16, Hofstra University, Hampstead, N.Y.: Town-hall meeting format with questions from undecided voters.
  • Third presidential debate: October 22, Lynn University, Boca Raton, Florida: Foreign issues, questions selected by moderator.

Make sure to tune and and watch these important debates Presidential Debates. We often get some real insight into what and who these presidential candidates are and what their platforms and plans are for the United States of America for the next four years. Even more importantly, we often see who is not going to be up to the challenge of being the President of the United States.

Political Conspiracy Dooms Us To Failure

people-politico-conspiracy-word-cloud-colorfulPerhaps one of the most invasive and destructive problems with today’s politics is the amazing amount of radical conspiracies that crop up in main stream media. These ludicrous and often hilarious conspiracies should be laughed off, and once would have been. However, they now seem to be easily accepted as truth by everyday people. Our world, our country, and our lives are inundated with problems and troubles of the everyday sort and we should not be wasting our time with convoluted and often outright crazy conspiracy theories. We have enough basic political issues already that don’t need to be further muddied by strange and bizarre conjurations of paranoia.

Now, I understand why conspiracies are so exciting and intriguing–I do. They speak to a fantastical part of our imagination, where wizards, dragons, and the Easter bunny reside. This is a part of our brain that we unfortunately are forced to push aside as we age. We all look back to our childhoods and think about the magic and awe that surrounded these fantasy stories of the unreal. Something in them touches each of us. It sets off something in our brains that allows us to imagine the possibilities.

In some ways this is good. This helps us to use our imagination and inspiration to test our world to see what is really real. Our imagination, and these fantasies can be a useful tool for us to think of possibilities that we otherwise may not consider.

However, if people start to imagine these fantasies could be real, they can begin to haunt us. It’s important to keep reality and critical thinking as our guiding principles. We may convince ourselves that there are monsters under the bed. We might worry ourselves into ulcers. We would design our roofs in completely unreasonable ways to prevent once-a-year reindeer hoof damage.

I think many people want to believe these political conspiracies because they want to think that the people in charge of our government and our country are really, really smart. I think all of us want to have the best, the brightest, and the most altruistic people running our government. Politicians have to be smart to be able to handle the complex issues and stresses that come with political office, right? If they are as smart as we think they should be, it also means that they are smart enough to pull off elaborate conspiracies. That means they can orchestrate political conspiracies that involve decades of planning. They can organize and monitor thousands of people to ensure they don’t tell anyone about the conspiracy.

Conspiracies can make a great novel or movie. But that is about all they are good for. The brutal fact of the matter is that these politicians we hope and pray are so much smarter and better then us aren’t. The real fact is that they are no smarter then anyone else. The difference is, politicians are rich. If you could hire a PR firm to change people’s perceptions of you, then you could seem much smarter, too!

Conspiracies help to give us confidence in our leaders as it attributes a great deal of unwarranted intelligence to them. However, in recent years I have seen little evidence that our politicians are smarter than anyone else. This is the truth that we the people need to understand and believe. The evidence is there and unfortunately our government and the politicians are about the exact opposite of super genius world-dominating supermen. We watch these politicians day in and day out while they attempt to conduct the business of running our government. They are so inept at it that we somehow, miraculously, think that they are actually doing it all on purpose as part of some super secret conspiracy. But they aren’t. They are selfish, narcissistic, greedy, lying people that can’t work together in the most basic sense.

People need to wake up and stop being distracted by these crazy conspiracy stories and ask themselves; “Can [insert crazy conspiracy theory here] be true when our elected and appointed officials cannot even perform the most basic functions of their jobs?” The answer of course, is no.

Conspiracies are based on fantasy instead of reality, and the solutions to our fantasy problems tend to be fantasy solutions. Our leaders need to be looking at the reality of America’s issues and tackling them simply, basically, and up front. We have bogged ourselves down in a political, social, and economic quagmire, and we won’t escape it until the people of America force the politicians, the media, and each other to return to looking at the world with reason and logic. We need to shift the focus to the basic reality of the world around us. We need to use common sense and the intelligence we do possess and put it towards the issues we face. Only then will we be able to improve America again.

Socialism is Not a &!%# Bad Word

people-politico-happy-socialist-peopleIt’s strange how we allow ourselves to be manipulated and convinced that something that is at the very core of humanity is somehow bad, somehow evil. Since the dawn of propaganda, political leaders have been turning innocuous words into words with unsavory connotations. But twisting a word around for your own political purposes, and therefore misleading people about the idea that word represents, just stifles communication.

In this era of sound bites and quick headlines, it seems we have diluted politics and our extremely complicated social and political issues down to labels, and one of those labels is socialism. The trouble is, for me as well as millions of others, socialism isn’t a bad word.

Here’s why.

First, let’s take a look at the actual definition of socialism.

A political theory or system in which the means of production and distribution are controlled by the people and operated according to equity and fairness rather than market principles.

So in the most basic sense, socialism is a political system and/or government controlled by the people with equity and fairness as the guiding principle in all decision making.

The problem is, as politicians who have made socialism the boogeyman certainly understand, all the scary things going through your mind as you ponder the word are not true. So let’s bring the big bad boogeyman out of the darkness and take a look at some of the basic principles of socialism, and apply those principles at both a micro and macro level.

We wouldn’t even exist today as a species if we did not have instinctual social and socialist habits. Humans were never the biggest or the strongest of creatures in the animal kingdom. In fact, as far as superior animalistic traits go, we are runts of the animal kingdom in almost every way. One of the most important things that set us apart from the rest of the animals is our intelligence.

Humans are smarter by far than any other creature. This “big brain” of ours figured out, in our early history, that the only way for us to survive is to work together as a social unit, to be socialist, with each member of a social unit helping the others in the unit. Not only did this socialist behavior save our species, it was the driving force behind how incredibly well we have thrived over the long journey of our evolution.

Now down to a closer view, something closer to home: our family structures. We instinctively cling to our families due to this socialist drive to work together for the benefit of the family unit. If we did not have a social nature, we would not have friends, families, or even groups working together for a greater purpose, such as businesses.

When we consider family, friends, and community, the happiest and most successful work together, as a cohesive unit, with each member doing his or her share, and one or more members doing more when necessary:

  • When Dad hurts his back and can’t work, Mom and the older children work a little harder to help pay the bills.
  • When a member of the church or book club who lives alone is diagnosed with cancer, the congregation or her friends bring over food, money, help with housework, and anything else they can do while she battles the disease. Now she can focus on getting better, not just surviving. They each give a little but the patient gets a lot.
  • When a woman gets pregnant, the family pitches in for food, clothes, baby gear, and tons of advice. They will help out after the baby is born, and she can focus on the care and well-being of the baby. The family members have a vested interest in the well-being of the next generation.
  • When a friend loses his job and can’t afford the rent, friends and family may loan him some money until he can get on his feet again. If that isn’t enough, someone will offer a place to stay, to be safe and not worry about where the next meal is coming from.

These are just a few of the socialist things we do, but we don’t call it socialism. We call this being neighborly or simply doing the right thing. We have learned that helping others makes us feel good, and if we help others when they need it, we will get help when we need it. This behavior strengthens the bonds of family and community, and smoothes the ups and downs of life. These supportive behaviors create a feeling of belonging and security, benefiting each member. Not only is this socialist behavior good for us, it is good for our families, neighborhoods, and local communities.

However, when we take from others for ourselves we may benefit ourselves in the short term, but we know we weaken ourselves in the long term. By taking from those around us we ultimately weaken ourselves.

Just imagine the chaos and misery if these ideas of socialism, equity, and fairness were frowned upon and discouraged. If families and communities truly lived by some candidates’ political campaign speeches, it would in fact destroy our family and communities:

  • When Dad hurts his back and can’t work, the family abandons him as so much dead weight. If he can’t bring in any money, what use is he?
  • When an acquaintance gets cancer, it is probably because of something she did wrong. If she survives, it was meant to be. If not, that’s just the way of things.
  • When a woman gets pregnant, that is her problem. If she can’t afford prenatal care or a car seat for the infant, well, she should have thought about that before.
  • When a friend loses his job and can’t afford the rent, his friends tell him he better find a new job quickly, since it’s much harder to look for jobs while homeless.

These scenarios might seem silly, but Republicans have been busy introducing bills to include drug testing requirements before receiving welfare while at the same time baulking at the idea of drug testing for themselves, even though both are paid through taxes. They are also actively and specifically blocking women from access to health care. And the one that takes the cake, this ridiculous obsession with repealing health care reforms that are supported by the majority of Americans. What makes this so amazingly hypocritical is that the majority of the health care reforms were originally conceived by and pushed for by the very party that now opposes them. Look to Senator McCain’s work with First Lady Hillary Clinton during the Clinton administration and the shining example of this health care working, Romneycare.

A Reference Guide to Socialism

A Reference Guide to Socialism

Yet wouldn’t these same politicians help their family members, community members, and friends, if they were to fall upon hard times? A politician’s community is so much bigger; it would seem they would understand the benefits of socialism more than most. After all, they are supposed to be representing the community—understanding the hard times that its members face, and trying to make things better.

What makes the morality of needless suffering so terribly wrong when you are talking about someone you know and love but when you are talking about someone you don’t morally righteous?

The fact is we must have social interaction to be successful; rich or poor, young or old, man or woman, we all benefit from socialism. It has made us who we are today and is the key to our success. We all know this and the idea and practice of socialism can and should be the same at the macro level as well as the micro level.

Socialism is not a bad word; it is the way we progress and the way to success as a nation.

Politics, Presidents, and Patriotism this 4th of July

Happy Birthday AmericaAs the 4th of July comes around again, we are all reminded of our patriotism on this most important holiday for our country, the anniversary of American independence. Celebrating the birthday of our country is important and it is even more important to do so with dignity and respect.

In this year of presidential politics the vitriol, hate, selfishness, and intolerance is at an all time high. This is a recipe for disaster normally, but can be much worse when compounded by alcohol and the hard times so many are having. Keep this in mind as the casual 4th of July political conversations begin at the BBQ’s. Remember that those around you are your friends and family. You should value them, their ideas and their political opinions.

Too often tolerance, cooperation, and comprise have been labeled as flaws, as traits of the weak. In fact these simple traits are some of the keystone ideas to this country, how it was formed and how it has survived to this point. Without these good and decent traits, the founding fathers would never have been able to agree on the Bill of Rights. The Constitution of the United States of America is written with tolerance and acceptance as its guiding principles: That we are all equal and we all have an equal right to our thoughts and opinions. These two documents make up the very foundation of America. America cannot thrive or prosper if we are all focused on our own agenda, wants and needs. We must think of what is good for us, but we must also work hard to see what is best for our country as a whole. Only through selflessness can we hope to see our country truly grow, prosper and flourish.

We must look to each other and help each other gain understanding, trust, and willingness to use these guiding principles in our everyday lives.

We must have tolerance and understanding for the nearly infinite amount of variety and differences in the lives of Americans and non citizens alike. You can do this by taking a moment and try to consider yourself in a similar situation or with a similar dilemma. Would your choice or reaction be the same if it was a stranger versus your mother, daughter, or friend?

We are all Americans and we need to learn to cooperate. Lack of cooperation doesn’t move this country forward. It sticks us all in an endless loop. And while we Americans are chasing our tails, the other nations of this world are pulling out ahead.

Above all, if there is any hope for us to move forward we must cast off the false ideas that compromise is a fault. That it is weakness. That it is giving up. That just simply is not true. For us to have any hope in moving forward and making a better world for ourselves and our children we will have to learn to compromise again. Compromise is when two or more parties agree on a middle ground. So a perfect compromise is when each party of a two-party negotiation gets 50% of what they want. In real compromise the only steps that all parties can agree on are small ones. This is how it should be. We should be making small steps towards progress, without looking back, to make this country better. These giant leaps of legislation, these radical ideological bills need to be greatly muted through real compromise. This can only happen if we make compromise a priority and force our politicians to make real compromise.

This is idealistic I know. And it sounds as if it’s a pipe dream of a fanciful, and unrealistic, thinker. However, this is not fantasy. Politics has been like this before. It’s hard to think that we as Americans are devolving in our politics and in our society. But I believe that is exactly the case right now. Our government barely functions and this paralysis has filtered through our entire country. From the debates about health care reform to the backyard discussions about immigration. Politics has devolved to name calling and bickering with too few now able to seriously, ethically and respectfully discuss the topics of today.

So when you think of the state of America on its official birthday, this 4th of July, make sure that you, and those around you, are sticking to these core principles that can and will guide us into a better and brighter future.

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