I have no mouth and must scream is a short story by Harlen Ellison. Unfortunately it also very accurately sums up my feelings on American politics. I’ll confess to avoiding Twitter and Facebook. I have my website but I’ve accepted that the stats on my website don’t lie, nobody wants to read my political posts. My voice is lost in the cacophony of political commentary and yet, every once in a while, I just have to express my opinions.

Let me ask you a question. Does the political party you’re affiliated with accurately reflect your views? I sincerely hope your answer is no. Any other answer and you’re just lying to yourself. That or you really need to familiarize yourself with your party’s platform.

If you’re like most people, your party mostly reflects your views. This is fine, I just wanted to establish that by belonging to a party, you’ve already accepted compromise. That’s an important concept. You accepted that compromise for the betterment of the party. Their views may not be identical to yours but your compromise gives your party a stronger voice.

This is the way politics should work. Unfortunately, the people at the top seem to have forgotten this detail. Their actions indicate a firm belief in their own opinions, as if each of us were in complete lock step with them. There’s a name for this kind of government and it’s not democracy.

Each of our “leaders” is so intent on their own agenda that they forget they are not the will of the people. Take our most recent Covid relief bill. Can anybody say that this was anything but a massive show of egos? Before you answer, take a few minutes to think of all the people facing the loss of their home, business, jobs and the wellbeing of their family, simply because our leaders didn’t want to compromise.

Everybody lost on that three ring circus and we’ll be feeling those losses for years. Stephen King’s “It” can’t begin to compete with the horror caused by this egofest. Family owned businesses will never return, people will never get to enjoy their retirement, and even worse, a lot of college funds went down the drain, simply to survive. That’s okay though, our leaders can be proud that they stayed the course, right into our third world status.

My favorite indication of how much they care about us is the clause requiring the Federal government to provide an unclassified report on UFOs within 180 days. One or more of these leaders had so many people writing to them about UFOs, that this became a condition of the Covid relief bill. Really? Maybe they thought the aliens had the technology to cure Covid and the rest of our government was hiding that fact. Stranger theories were being tossed around.

Tomorrow we’ll have a new president. As much as I would like to, I’m not going to discuss the drama leading up to this change. Nope, not going there. I welcome this as a possible change to the my way or the highway politics I’ve seen infest both parties.

All of us need to understand compromise. It’s how we move forward when our fates are so closely tied to everyone else. The Internet has made it easy to fool ourselves that everyone thinks the same as we do. Don’t like someone’s views, just cancel them. It’s a great solution, until it happens to you.

Don’t forget, you are an individual. Sooner or later, you will slip up and express a view that diverges from pack thinking. We can only hope that when that happens your friends will accept your right to have a different opinion and still believe you’re a friend. Then again, maybe you need new friends.

© 2021, Byron Seastrunk. All rights reserved.

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