It's not time to throw in the towel. The country deserves at least another try.
I just read an interesting article comparing the current disagreements between the Republicans and the Democrats over the direction the country needs to go that viewed the relationship as a marriage and the writer was asking for a divorce.
The article pointed out the top five most-divorcing states in the nation were all red states, and while that may be true, I have doubts that the reasons for the divorces are political. The writer continued to opine that the Republican leadership and their base exhibited a “my way or the highway” mentality.
I’m sure he truly believes that to be the case, although one could point to the current administration’s passage of the Affordable Care Act without any Republican support as the opposite of compromise, and we all remember the President’s admonition that if Congress did not act as he thought it should, he was armed with a phone and a pen and was willing to use them. Sounds a bit stubborn and non-inclusive to me.
But the thing in the article that puzzled me is the listing of what is considered a “progressive” agenda, that most Americans want.
Beginning with taxes, the writer states most Americans want the wealthy to pay taxes. Most Republicans agree with that statement. Where we differ is we want all to pay their fair share of taxes, wealthy or not. It makes no sense to penalize someone for working hard and being successful. Close all the loopholes and make all pay what they owe in taxes. Otherwise, it is just wealth re-distribution.
Next, the writer said most Americans want clean, renewable energy and a safe environment. Most Republicans agree with that as well. We differ on the means to the end, and believe we don’t have to sacrifice the economy to achieve the goal.
Most Americans want women to have fair, reasonable access to emergency contraception, he continued. Most Republicans don’t believe the killing of an unborn child qualifies as an acceptable contraceptive decision.
Most Americans want to invest more into education. Most Republicans also want to allow all of our children to attend a good school and get the best education possible. But the Republicans think throwing more money at failed attempts is not the answer. Most want to return the control to local school systems that know what their needs and priorities are, instead of an all-powerful bureaucracy housed in some central government miles away, imposing their will.
Finally, most Americans want affordable health care. Who is not in favor of that? But affordable health care cannot be defined as a government-subsidized program in which premiums rise at 25% per year with deductibles of $5000 or more. Most working-class families cannot absorb a $5000 hit to their yearly income, on top of paying as much as $1000 a month for the privilege.
The Affordable Care Act is neither affordable to the government, the insurance companies, nor those without subsidized insurance policies. And it will only get worse. Most Republicans want a health care program that is truly affordable to all.
So you see, we all want the same things. We just differ on the ways to achieve them.
Maybe instead of divorce, we should just seek counseling instead. We can still work it out, for the sake of the children.