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The Foothill Dragon Press

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The US government needs to re-prioritize its citizens

The job of the United States government is to protect its citizens. However, recently it seems as though protecting citizens is a second priority for elected government officials. Their first priority is holding onto the “fundamentals” of their given party and hurting the opposing party by any means possible.

Credit: Joel Mayorga/The Foothill Dragon Press
Party politics often end up hurting United States citizens. The government needs to make protecting citizens its first priority. Credit: Joel Mayorga/The Foothill Dragon Press

The job of the United States government is to protect its citizens. However, recently it seems as though protecting citizens is a second priority for elected government officials. Their first priority is holding onto the “fundamentals” of their given party and hurting the opposing party by any means possible.

If America wants to continue to be a successful and productive democratic state, we need to realign the priorities of our government.

Data Source: Benson Strategy Group's "State of the Center" Poll. Infographic Credit: Emma Kolesnik/The Foothill Dragon Press
Data Source: Benson Strategy Group’s “State of the Center” Poll. Infographic Credit: Emma Kolesnik/The Foothill Dragon Press

Moderates are near extinction in our executive and legislative branches of government. If a politician decides to run as a moderate he or she will almost certainly not get endorsed by their party and not get elected. Once in office if they express more moderate views, or try to compromise, they will face major backlash and have very little hope of reelection.

With the presidential elections coming up, we can already begin to see some of the flaws with modern campaigning. As with the example of the Hillary Clinton private phone use “scandal,” the focus of both parties has been to make their opponents look bad. Around the time of that information coming out, there were more people and information focused on whether Hillary Clinton was ethically fit to be a president than there was people looking into the policies of both sides and arguing actual opinions.

The issue of an extremist government has one key flaw: no compromise. In order to have a productive system, there needs to be people willing to budge on their stances. There should be politicians that are able to work with the other parties, instead of against.

With the current system, everyday citizens start getting left behind. This happened with the homeland security bill, as well as in many other situations. Back in March, there was a bill to renew the funding of homeland security for the fiscal year.

The Republican party decided that this would be a good opportunity to insert an anti-immigration clause into the bill. If the bill had passed the way the Republican party had worded it, it would have taken away President Obama’s executive order to protect illegal immigrants in the United States.

The situation of whether or not to pass a “clean” bill led to a standoff between the Democrat and Republican parties. The vote got extended a week, until finally it passed as a “clean” bill. Part of the problem was that the Republican party did not stick with their speakers and their parties plan.

Many republicans voted to pass the “clean” bill while at the same time the more conservative members of the party voted against it.

This bill was a great example of the lack of compromise between parties. Eventually some members of the Republican party realized that they could not afford to let homeland security go without funding, which is why they voted with the “clean” bill.

While the standoff was happening, millions of citizens employed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) were hanging in the balance. If the bill had not passed, millions of people would be left without a paycheck.

If this had been the first consideration for the government, the bill would have passed immediately. Instead, it turned into an argument over ideologies.

The two parties have aligned themselves with labels. Being a Republican is almost interchangeable with being considered a conservative, and being being a Democrat is interchangeable with being a liberal. This is not necessarily the truth, but the labels the parties have play into how we perceive them.

In reality, there isn’t clearly defined lines separating the two parties. According to the Atlantic, “more than a third of American voters call themselves neither liberal or conservative but moderate.” Many people have views that fall onto either side. This is why it is so important the parties show the merit in their opinions, rather than attempting to deface the other parties.

What do you think?
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Comments on articles are screened and those determined by editors to be crude, overly mean-spirited or that serve primarily as personal attacks will not be approved. The Editorial Review Board, made up of 11 student editors and a faculty adviser, make decisions on content.
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  • @

    @Former StudentMay 27, 2015 at 9:00 pm

    Thank you, Former Student, that is a very good point, and I’m glad to see there are some people out there that are on my side.

     
    Reply
  • F

    Former StudentMay 27, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    I am absolutely outraged that the DragonPress (an organization that prides itself on being an open forum) would feel the need to censor comments! This is immensely disappointing.

     
    Reply
  • E

    Excuse to argue.May 27, 2015 at 11:54 am

    It’s not very fair to call her out on a political twist in her article and use that as an excuse to give a rant about how Obama is the bigger evil compared to Bush.

     
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  • T

    Take a broader look at the world-May 26, 2015 at 9:11 pm

    If you’re so concerned about the welfare of the US Citizens, why do you feel the urge to put a political spin on your article here- “The Republican party decided that this would be a good opportunity to insert an anti-immigration clause into the bill. If the bill had passed the way the Republican party had worded it, it would have taken away President Obama’s executive order to protect illegal immigrants in the United States.”
    [Right after talking about extremist governments.]
    What do illegal aliens have anything to do with it? And is this really the biggest problem you see?
    You could talk about the ongoing problems on a global scale, the Russian invasion of Crimea that you may feel is old news- yet it’s still developing, yet shrouded by the cloud of ISIS. We could also talk about how China and North Korea have built up a very impressive nuclear arsenal but no one here really wonders if they’ll put it to use.
    Or, if you’d rather, you could pull the political card- which I seem to be smelling in every one of your posts to the Press, you could talk about your lord and savior, our president, Mr. Barack Obama. Now before I get attacked for being a racist or a right wing hillbilly- look at the facts (which you- or anyone else probably do not want to do…)
    As it is hard to find an up to date statistic, as it changes so often- we can look at debt. Something the left wing so often criticizes the last Bush for causing. In the years 1789 through 2008, $6.3 trillion dollars in national debt was accrued (inflation and deflation observed.) Now we can look at Obamas first term alone and see he added a whopping $6.5 trillion, or as of August 2014, over $7 trillion alone. Now this is where, predictably, bush gets blamed for 9/11 and called a warmonger. Save your breath and energy, because if we look back now, the spiral of ISIS is completely Obamas fault. We know that Obama wanted to pull our soldiers out of the middle east, and he did just that (Not even to mention how many of our soldiers came home maimed, or were K.I.A for no resolve) but the thing is, with radical culture, you need radical control over them. After our Military pulled out, they immediately fell to ruins, governments being overthrown, and warfare breaking out everywhere.

    On a less political look, we could talk about illegal immigration, though it could tie back to politics if you really want it to- yet a bipartisan resolve is not out of reach. In 2011, an estimated 2,830,000 illegals were estimated to be living in California alone, not to mention that number has since grown, and is not a national statistic. The main problem with illegal aliens is just that—ILLEGAL— This state more so than any other fosters them, welcomes them in, and plays Robin Hood. The state will gladly take care of them. Laws have become so loose on them- they can get pulled over and the police do not have to do anything- if they don’t have papers hey, who cares? Free to go! Now…when they don’t even have a citizenship and they are eligible for all this help from the state is where your mommy and daddy should be complaining. Where do their free meals, health care, and everything else come from? The answer is you, not the government. The government is simply a middleman in the process of taking your hard earned money and redistributing it to those who refuse to work. (They can’t work because they don’t have the same opportunities as you and I, right?) wrong! If they immigrate legally, they have just as many opportunities to start from the bottom and work up as anyone else would- but they don’t want to because our government offers them the alternative- free everything.

    [Part of this comment has been removed based on the Dragon Press comment policy]

     
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    • B

      Benjamin LimpichMay 29, 2015 at 3:07 pm

      You comment is ignorant for a variety of reasons, and normally I would ignore this kinda stuff, but something in particular caught my attention: your hypocrisy regarding political perspective. You want Emma to “take a broader look at the world” yet you blatantly and almost humorously blame Obama “completely” for the “spiral of ISIS” which is a grossly narrow view of the topic. ISIS is the spawn of Al-Qaeda, who’s rise to power can be directly blamed on the Bush Junior, Clinton, Bush Senior, and Reagan administrations, and can indirectly be linked back to European Powers far older than you care to know about or consider. I don’t know what you mean by “radical control over them” being needed, but your shallow analysis of the issue and the supposedly correct solution is depressingly misinformed.

      Don’t imply someone has a incomplete view on a subject when you go off on an Obama rant that has more holes than a building in Tikrit, or at the very least admit that it is much MUCH more complicated than what we can explain in a single comment on a student news site.

       
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