This week I’d like to do something a little different by asking for YOUR opinion on what ails the world today. Horrible situations and events ranging from terrorist attacks on US Soil to production disasters and wars being waged against civilians cause us look to leaders for guidance and assurance that these issues are being dealt with. Already horrific events are exacerbated by the fact that we are losing all hope in those we have elected to represent our interests, and to handle problems like these with empathy and efficiency.
The problem with our government is brought to light especially poignantly in this article from the New Yorker (Cleverly Titled: Courageous Senators Stand Up To American People), which satirizes the very real fact that, when it comes down to brass tacks, our representatives do not reflect the will of the people whom they represent. On what became a disgraceful and revealing day for our government earlier this week, the Senate rejected a bill which would expand background checks for gun buyers across the board. Despite the fact that polls reported 90% of Americans support this measure, vicious and single-minded opposition from the NRA was enough to cause legislators to cower in fear and shelf the bill. Whoever dangles the biggest carrot gets to decide in which direction the beast of burden, which is our hopelessly corrupted government, lurches next.
President Obama was right to say that it was a shameful day for congress, though he is not entirely without culpability when it comes to the yawning gap between what the public wants and what politicians are actually doing.He was recently responsible for quietly doing away with measures of the STOCK Act, which will cause further roll-backs in government transparency. Ironic that the existing lack of transparency is exactly what allowed him to strike down crucial provisions in this bill without any backlash from media or the public.
So my question to you is this: How and why have Councils, congresses, parliaments, etc. (both domestic and international) become so deadlocked, embattled and ineffective in this day and age? How have we let the interests and crucial needs of the many be overshadowed by the demands of an elite few?