News From Terre Haute, Indiana

June 15, 2013

READERS' FORUM: June 15, 2013

The Tribune-Star

---- — America needs another hero

Recently, we marked another black day in American history. On that date in the not-too-far distant past, another hero was gunned down. Bobby joined his brother, John, along with MLK and Abraham Lincoln on the list of American heroes who were gunned down on the streets of our country.

It has been almost 50 years since that fateful day in Dallas. I was working at a downtown furniture store when Walter Cronkite made the announcement that JFK was dead. I wept because the Kennedys represented what is best about America. The hopes and dreams that they represented have not died. They have been lost to petty bickering and in-fighting between the political parties.

MLK had a dream, but I wonder what he would think about our present state of politics. We have a habit now of feeling it is permissible to do everything we can to heap blame and shame on whoever is in the White House. The name-calling has sunk to a new low. The disrespect and hate-mongers have reached a level that makes me ashamed.

I got an email the other day about the 545 people who control the lives of millions. These are the people we elect to represent us and to conduct the business of our democracy. What do we have now? A governing body (House of Representatives) that has as its main objective to make sure anything the current president suggests never becomes law. This body’s main objective from the day the president took office was to ruin his tenure with suggestions of conspiracy, non-transparency, scandals, etc.

These are the people we elect to serve us. Whenever we have someone in office who wants to make our lives better, the opposing party thinks they have the right to waste taxpayers’ money with useless votes on laws already on the books.

What has happened to the dreams of JFK, MLK, and Bobby? Where have our heroes gone? Where is Camelot? Is there not one person who can rise above the political poison so prevalent in Washington and lead our country forward? Will the next generation produce another hero that will be subjected to the abuse of our corrupt political system?

I have been a liberal Democrat all of my adult voting life because I believe in the principles of the Democratic Party. Who in my party will become a hero? Who in the GOP will become a hero? Have we no one in either party who will put the good the country above everything else? Must we accept the status quo?

In 2014, will we again elect people to Congress who’s only goal is to gain as much from their time in office as possible? We as citizens need to wake up and realize that we need a change in Washington. Vote out those who have been obstructionists. Send representatives to Washington who will work for us and not be available to the highest bidder.

If I were not so old, I would consider trying to run myself. I am sick of things as they are now. I am sick of watching those who supposedly represent us, use us as a stepping stone to wealth. I am sick of the principles of democracy being sold to the highest bidder. I want a hero.

Before I leave this earth I want to vote for someone who isn’t bound by political parties but who wants what is best for all of us, not just the chosen few. I want a hero. Can I find one?

— Shirley A. Thomas