This article was last modified on February 3, 2007.


On Ownership of America

The following letter was submitted to The Post-Crescent on February 3, 2007 (and published February 5th).

***

Founding Father John Jay had a favorite maxim: “The people who own the country ought to govern it.” For the past century we have let the country devolve into a kind of plutocracy, allowing those who own the media and the corporations to make our decisions for us. But as Jay would tell you, owning stock or real estate does not make someone the owner of a country. The people who till the lands and populate the mills are just as much the ones with dominion over America.

In November, we as Americans took the first step in steering away from the growing trend of consolidated corporate power by electing a Democratic majority. We have already seen the beginning of better wages for those who need them most, the prospects of affordable health care and the possibility of ending a fruitless war that we neither need nor support. But we cannot stop here; we cannot allow the Democrats to decide our future any more than we could allow the Republicans: this country belongs to the citizens.

There are non-partisan solutions to keep the people in power rather than special interests. First and foremost, pushing for open government so corruption cannot hide behind the guise of “national security”. Second, further campaign reform so the people elected (from any party) are chosen on the basis of issues and ideas, not by how much funding their parties or handlers can throw at them. We need a more aggressive media that actually challenges the status quo with facts rather than spewing out some spin doctor’s press release as “news” or allowing advertisers to skew what opinions can be considered legitimate. And most importantly, we need to stay vigilant and make our voices heard; when the rabble sleeps, those in power are given carte blanche to trample on our rights, our Constitution and our liberties.

Write letters, attend council meetings and do not be afraid to question what they call reality. The tide is turning, but if we don’t act now, it could turn back unexpectantly at any moment.

Also try another article under Letters to ...
or another one of the writings of Gavin.

Leave a Reply