Until recently, I was content to do my civic duty by voting at each opportunity for the candidate of my choice. Once I had casted my vote, I felt that everything else would fall into place and government would do the responsible thing toward me and all of the rest of the constituents who reported to the polls and casted their vote for good government. Judging by pass performances from our Congressman, I am sure that you have to agree with me when I say our real jobs start the day after that representative takes office. We have to know who our State, as well as our National representatives is, and what they are doing.
If we had collectively, as State and National constituents with concerns, been paying attention, Phil Gramm would not have been able to deregulate the Commodities Market Act without our protesting to our representatives in both Houses. We could have written our respective Congressman and complained mightily about the President’s wish to cut taxes to such a degree that there is nothing there to reduce the nation debt, not that it would have helped in that case. We could have protested and written letters and camped out at our Congressman’s office door to stop the invasion of Iraq. We could have done a lot by sharing with our Congressman our thoughts on these things because they represent us in Congress!
The election of Obama has done more to awaken the possibilities that are at our fingertips when it comes to voicing our opinion about what our Congressman are doing. We should stay abreast of what is happening in Congress. Voice an opinion about the things that we don’t like and praise them when they are doing a good job. I am sure that our elected officials go to our State and National ‘Capital Hills’ with good intentions and there are things that go on there that we are not privy to, but that does not give them the right to bargain away our interest on issues with which we take exception.
Get involved! Contact your Congressman and tell him that you are interested in this or that issue and the reasons why you are interested. Talk to him and write him often enough about – credible – issues. Don’t be a nuisance, be informed and let your conversation reflect that you are informed and concerned. Each State and National representative has both e-mail and office telephone numbers that we can use to contact them. Use them to keep your representatives informed. Refuse to accept form letters in response to correspondence with their office. The internet is a powerful tool that we can use to stay in touch with the people that matter most to us in government.