In a democracy, there are two kinds of citizens: those who make something happen, and those who let something happen.
Both groups should feel a sense of national shame right now for making, or letting, the events of recent years happen.
First, think about school shootings. According to USA Today, “Since Columbine in 1999, there have been 25 fatal, active school shootings at elementary and high schools in America.” In addition, there have been multiple mass homicides at a college, a nightclub, a country music festival, a church Bible study and multiple other venues. Babies, school children, teachers, young adults and even politicians have been the victims. Why is there no political will to stop this “American carnage?” Shame on us.
Second, think about the toxic partisan politics of recent years.To put it simply, we have a majority party, the Republicans, who are systematically dismantling our democracy, allowing corporations to rape the environment, rigging the system to favor the rich, and punishing the poor. This party still claims to represent a majority of voters, who, by their silence, and lack of urgency, allowed this to happen. Shame on us.
Third, we have a nation which has lost its moral, ethical, religious compass. On our currency is printed: “In God we Trust.” For those who espouse belief in God, do we really follow the moral and ethical precepts of God? Read Micah 6:8 “He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” While you are at it, read Matthew 22:36-40 where Jesus teaches that following God’s law requires loving God, and loving one’s neighbor as oneself.
Shame on us.
Fourth, we have an administration in Washington whose President lies most every day and who burdens middle class and poor people with overwhelming debt. This administration shows no compassion for immigrants. Its foreign policy tactics are to bully others (allies and enemies alike) and to build walls along political borders and between religious and racial groups. Shame on us.
How can we remove this shameful stain on our nation? Citizens need to speak up and cry, “SHAME” on public officials who make or allow these shameful things to happen.
Citizens need to VOTE for candidates, not by their party affiliation, but by their willingness and ability to represent all of the people, guided by a moral and ethical compass, not lust for power or financial gain. If we citizens don’t do this, then “shame on us.”
Rev. Dr. Thomas G. Sinnott
Associated with Kent and Queen Anne’s Indivisible