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Red versus Blue versus Red, White and Blue

April 5, 2019
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

To the editor:

I would like to begin by thanking the editorial staff of the Cape Coral Breeze for providing a forum that allows for the free expression of viewpoints on a complete spectrum of issues ranging from those pertaining to our community to those of worldwide interest. The "Letters to the Editor" section is usually my first stop in reading The Breeze each week; I find it greatly entertaining to see what topics motivate our residents to speak out. In some instances, one only need read the name of the author to know whether they speak out in support of one national political party or the other. More importantly, the opinions being expressed frequently vilify the other party in favor of their own. I, for one, am disgusted that the political environment in this great Nation has become so polarized that there is seemingly no middle ground for consensus on a wide range of issues that cry out for action. One quickly learns while making the journey through life that the resolution of many issues is not clearly simple. Far too often, good results occur only from hard work, cooperation and compromise.

I recall watching the recent mid-term election returns and feeling like I was watching a college football game wondering which team was going to win or lose. The ramifications of this reality are substantial when one considers that far too many issues of significance for our Nation are decided by Congressional votes that are cast largely along party lines. Does it not seem odd that there is so little cooperation between our elected officials when they deal with matters of vital importance to our people? The engine of political leadership in Washington, D.C. is stuck in neutral and has been for far too long.

There is a little matter of consistency that should be addressed, as well. I am a grandparent and I am more than a little concerned about the Nation that my grandchildren will inherit as a result of today's petty political squabbling. When I was in college, the decision was made to fund the Vietnam War, not by raising taxes, but through deficit spending. Here we are, over 45 years and $20 trillion in deficits later, and without regard to which party occupies the White House or controls Congress; nothing has changed except that the deficit keeps growing. In the recent past, one of the main political parties could not shut up about deficits when the President was of the other party but are remarkably silent when the President is from their own. If it was so bad then, why is it so tolerable, now? I don't want my grandchildren to live in a country where the economy has collapsed under the weight of staggering national debt.

Sadly, the Judicial Branch of government is now becoming politicized. Growing up, we learned in school about the lady holding "Scales of Justice" being blindfolded. Today, the White House and Congress posture and manipulate the process of appointing Supreme Court Justices so that the members seated on the bench are either of liberal or conservative ilk. Does a fair and impartial court decision result from the influence of one political party or another?

There are many issues facing our people that cry out for action. To be specific, pharmaceutical companies lobby Congress for favorable patent opportunities that allow them to escalate the cost of desperately needed medications beyond the financial reach of many of our citizens. A large number of college students are unable to attend college without securing student loans to cover their tuition costs and the federal government charges interest on these loans, making them wildly expensive for the students over time. One political party continually complains about the Affordable Care Act. I admit that there may be deficiencies in this legislation; simply put, quit complaining about it and come up with a better alternative. The bottom line: People are more important than possessions!! Take specific actions that provide solutions to care for our Nation's citizens.

In my view, what America needs is elected representatives who are capable of working together and are more concerned about doing what is right for the citizens of our country rather than working for re-election and/or serving the interests of their party. We need fewer Republicans and fewer Democrats and more Americans serving our needs in Washington, D.C. Achieving that reality begins with "We The People!" We, the electorate, must set the example for our elected officials by demonstrating that we can tolerate opposing points in view in the quest to secure a better future for our children and grandchildren. If we are unable to put aside the petty "my team is better than your team" mentality, we all lose.

Tom Brennan, No PhD.

Cape Coral



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