An Oncoming Storm: The 2014 Midterm Elections
I understand that most of the people I know are jumping for joy that the GOP has taken control of both Houses. This is a ‘Red State,’ so it stands to reason. However, as most of you know, I am not a Republican, so yesterday was not really a good day as far as the individuals I supported for office. I am, of course, disappointed, but even more so, I am concerned.
I can foresee renewed attempts to squash marriage equality, a cause that I have been working diligently on for nearly twenty years, which includes the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which is legislation proposed that would prohibit discrimination in hiring and employment on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity by employers with at least 15 employees. Right now there are nearly thirty states that can fire a person just for being gay.
I can foresee even more attempts to regulate women’s health services by propsing even more stringent rules that will attempt to further legislate vaginas and uteri, and severely limit the choices that women have when it comes to their overall and reproductive health, including more attempts to close Planned Parenthood, which provides nearly one million women every year with cancer screenings and other potentially life saving services. No bills or legislation pending on the penis yet, though.
I can foresee millions of people being sent back to countries where they will more than likely be murdered (including children) or tortured. We just don’t seem to like our neighbors much, even though we don’t want to admit that without them our farms would fail and our construction and food services industries would be suffering from a lack of labor. No bills or legislation pending on those pesky illegal Canadians, though.
I can foresee an even more concerted effort by the willfully ignorant waging their war on science, which is making us the laughing stock of the entire planet, while simultaneously dunking our kids to the bottom of the educational barrel.
I can foresee more negative push-back against the UN, an organization that I have fully supported for most of my adult life.
I can foresee the dismantling of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and more pressure to reduce the benefits for workers such as overtime rules, etc.
I can foresee changes to Social Security and Medicare that, as a recipient of both, looms large in the horizon as something I should be concerned about.
I can foresee a sharp increase to defund the ACA, or at least strip it down to ineffective levels, in spite of the verified facts that it is helping tens of millions of people; and here in Georgia more hospitals closing, the cost of health care increasing, and the economy suffering as people who cannot afford to get healed continue to lose jobs for not being able to show up for work.
I can foresee the continued use of the redefined ‘religious liberty’ to promote even more discrimination, bigotry and hate.
I can foresee even more of our tax dollars going to fight unwinnable wars in countries that don’t even want us there, and the further reduction of funds made available to help our Veterans once they return home.
Forget the Supreme Court or the office of the Attorney General…
Forget the advancement of a Medical Marijuana law in the red states, which would help tens of thousands of people in Georgia alone, and add tens upon tens of millions of dollars to our tax base, instead of the countless millions being spent on an unwinnable war on a freaking plant, which is doing nothing but giving the illegal cartels more business than it can handle..
I can foresee the continued collapse of our infrastructure as our bridges, highways, tunnels and national parks fall further and further into disrepair.
I can foresee the further deregulating of Wall Street and Banks, because that has worked out so well for us.
I can foresee a concerted effort to repeal the minimum wage, and while that will never happen, it will hamper efforts to have it raised to a level where our citizenry can afford to contribute to our economy.
Doom and gloom? You bet your ass it is. These may be great times for the well-to-do, but as far as the poor, disenfranchised, sick, elderly and the rest of those who are living day to day, paycheck to paycheck, hoping for a paycheck, or just trying to hang on by a thread, I am not feeling the love, compassion, kindness or neighborliness.
In the words of Rev. Mark Sandlin:
“We have made gods out of money, power and greed. We have let fear rather than love and compassion rule the day as well as our hearts and minds. We allow our moral imperatives to be dictated to us through a glowing screen at the whims of those whose only interest is to keep us in our place as their own power and wealth grow.
As a minister I would be remiss to ignore the role of the Church in all of this. Some branches of the Church have played a key role in this downward spiral — teaching the masses to blindly follow, spewing a false theology that proclaims some people are more chosen than others, that differences are an abomination, that God needs us to force God’s “will” on others.
My hope rests in the reality that, in the end, love wins. Time will heal this misdirection of justice.”
You will forgive me if I am not at all happy about this..