By Jen Winkler Helsel:
I thought “don’t talk about religion or politics” was generally accepted as a basic rule of considerate interaction. I mean, you really have to know your crowd. Obviously, he didn’t know his crowd, because I didn’t agree with a single piece of Fox News based garbage he was upchucking all over our ears. Then again, maybe this guy did know his crowd - some will agree with him, and the others who don’t have too fine of upbringing to engage in political debates at a family Thanksgiving dinner.
But, it’s not Thanksgiving dinner anymore. And I have words brewing. It’s not a bunch of lazy hippies who are mad because some people have more money than others. It is hardworking Americans who see schools being closed, funding slashed for special ed programs, and cuts made at our police and fire stations, and then watch our government hand over billions of dollars to corporations who never pass the trickle on down. It’s about the dismay that big box companies are laying off workers, not because they are not making a profit (Best Buy), but because they are not making a big enough profit. It is about the frustration of so many big businesses who offer few, if any, full-time positions so that they can cheap out on health insurance and benefits, while private insurance is absolutely unaffordable for most. It’s about having bought in to the promise that getting an education and hard work were the answers to a comfortable and secure life, and then finding out that it will more likely result in huge school debt and underemployment. It’s about lawmakers’ ability to vote themselves a raise, and recieve lifetime benefits for kissing lobbyists’ and big corporations’ asses instead of representing the public. It’s about watching our parents and grandparents who worked hard all their lives and are now on fixed incomes having to deal with new cuts. It’s about that suspicion that unless something changes, this is not going to be the kind of place we want our kids to live.