Now that the government has returned to some semblance of normal, a true oxymoron, I thought that I would share an article that I wrote in the midst of the shutdown. Though I am happy that furloughed people are back to work and able to once again provide for their families, I do not believe that this was an exercise in democracy, but a vivid picture of political agenda. Our president stated that we would not see a repeat of this in January; only time will tell.
So, here are my thoughts from one week ago. As I have watched this government shutdown unfold, I become more and more perplexed concerning ownership. We were in Nags Head when the shutdown began, and saw the effects on a daylong journey to Ocracoke. Many things along the National Seashore were closed, including the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. While we were in Nags Head, we had friends that were unable to enter Yellowstone National Park, as well as saw the difficulty that World War II veterans had, to get to see the memorial that was dedicated to them. Can someone answer for me, who owns what?
I, a federal, state and local taxpayer, stand beside many other Americans. I happen to believe that each one of us owns the things that the government believes that they have the right to close. Those that have been furloughed because of this shutdown deserve to receive back pay for lost wages. However, people who have been tasked with enforcement of closures need to realize that when things return to normal, their role will return once again to serving the people. The problem is, who will trust you?
The politicians work for the voters/taxpayers, and not the other way around. We trusted you and hired you to act on behalf of all Americans, and I believe that you have misrepresented us, causing many to lose their confidence in our government. Where is it written that to get what you want that you must negatively affect as many Americans as possible? As for you Mr. President, you are a tenant in a house owned by many. You hold the ultimate responsibility of uniting a nation, but instead, I believe that you have served to keep us divided. I have found that every person is either a leader or a follower. Which are you? You chose to run for President of our great nation, so please do the job that you were elected to do.
Yellowstone, the White House, the Capitol Building, the Lincoln Memorial and the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse belong to the people, just to name a few. The crazy thing is that privately-owned businesses have been forced to close because of this shutdown. How is this even legal? Instead of utilizing park rangers to enforce closures, use them to prevent vandalism, and open these places up.
As Christian people, it is our responsibility to pray for government leaders. My prayer is that they will lead with integrity. Leaders who refuse to lead need to go. A leader must be servant-hearted, not to be in this for all they can get for themselves. Whatever it takes to end this shutdown without destroying our nation, and increasing our national debt, do it! Until then, open back up what belongs to each of us.