Is it me, or is everyone as of late super worked up over everything political? And I don't mean worked up in a productive, good way. I mean worked up as in angry, vengeful, awful. Don't get me wrong, every healthy society I think needs a little anger to fill the sails. Without anger and passion, the political system never changes--never gets any better.
But right now, in March 2010 in the United States of America, all I see is hate. In the Boston Globe today, a GOP senator from New Hampshire was quoted saying "Obviously, the damage has been done," regarding the recently passed health bill. Um, damage? It's like he was talking about a hurricane or a terrorist attack. The health bill is going to--DUN DUN DUN--oh no! HELP PEOPLE WHO NEED HELP.
When I watched the House of Representatives the other night, I was flabbergasted (great word, huh?). But seriously, I was. These people were unmovable, unagreeable, and completely stuck in the mud. I couldn't agree with anyone, and no one could agree with each other. No one seemed to be willing to hear what anyone else had to say. Allegedly, a congressman even yelled "baby killer" at his colleague, nearly as offensive as the congressman who yelled "you lie!" at the President (no one would have done that to Bush even though he did lie, but don't even get me started on that tangent). It was at that moment I hated American politics more than ever.
Perhaps my hatred at the political atmosphere of the nation is just territory that goes along with being part of this generation. I have a couple of friends who are politically motivated, but many who simply don't care. I am the most liberal out of all of my friends, but at the same time, no one is very willing to have a good chat and try to see eye to eye. Everyone seems to want a fight. I'm not particularly good at this either, though I hope I am getting better at trying to see the other side of the coin. Everyone should try to at least meet half way. Recently, a senator from Indiana, Democrat Evan Bayh, announced that he would not run for re-election. He used this announcement, the New York Times said, to "lambaste a Senate that he described as frozen by partisan politics and incapable of passing even basic legislation" (from the N.Y. Times, February 16). Is this what politics in America has come to? Even our senators are becoming disenchanted at this hopeless system that cannot achieve anything.
In saying that, this recent passage of the health care bill was important. Not everyone may agree, but at least now we know that Washington can get something done. Allen Boyd, a congressman from Florida, said it best:
"Earlier I heard the gentle lady from Washington State say 'it's the wrong time.' For 22 years in my legislative service as I've been trying to find solutions I've heard 'it's the wrong time'...the other side has brought us no viable alternatives...[so] if not this, then what? If not now, then when?"
I believe he is right. If we cannot do anything now, when will we ever be able to do anything? I wish people would stop being so angry about this, and I wish it wasn't so easy to be apathetic and disenchanted.
If anyone needs proof that Allen Boyd actually said that, it can be found here. You'll have to fast forward to about 2:54.