Legislative Update - December 2016
And the Winner is...
The election is over. So many Americans have weighed in on the subject of politics this election cycle. Unfortunately it got really nasty with all the mud-slinging and name calling. If you vote for (insert candidate name) you must be (defamatory name) or anti- (insert group name). I watched on election night so many campaigns either celebrating with their candidate or crying. Then come the protests. Riots, property damage, physical assaults. All because a candidate did not win the election. My wife and 13-year old daughter were discussing this after-election response. My daughter gets it. She said, “they lost. They need to deal with it and not act like a baby.” That got me to thinking. Who are the real winners and losers in the elections?
The Real Winners
From the beginning of this election cycle almost eighteen months ago, so many Americans worked feverishly to help elect their candidate or get their prop passed. I witnessed young Americans working beside older Americans towards a common goal. The goal spanned the generational gap so many feel is too wide to breach. I saw millennials working with Baby Boomers and both listening to each others thoughts and opinions. That my friends, is a huge step forward in this country. To have our younger generation stepping up for something they believe in is HUGE! My grandfather used to say “I’ll light a fire under your butt”. Well the fire is lit for this next generation. Let us harness this and fan the flame for freedom.
The polls got it all wrong. The blue collar working folks spoke loud. They are sick and tired of being spoke down to and they spoke back in the voting booth. Most of us are blue collar. It doesn’t matter if you are a doctor, lawyer or accountant. It doesn’t matter if you are a construction worker, plumber or ditch digger. The blue collar principles of hard work is prevalent throughout the ABATE membership and motorcyclist community at large. We need to capture this momentum and let the politicians hear us. And that we will never be silenced again.
The Real Losers
There are those who believe that because of this election cycle, democracy as we know it is dead. I disagree. The real losers in this election are those who will give up fighting for their beliefs. Those who go sit in a corner and sulk over not getting their way. Those who are still slinging insults and defamatory comments because they didn’t get their participation trophy. The real loser in this election is our nation if we do not move forward. In her concession speech, Secretary Clinton said, “Our Constitutional Democracy demands our participation.” The real losers are those who will refuse to participate any longer.
Here’s a little reminder from high school civics class. We do not live in a democracy. We are a democratic republic. The definition of a democratic republic is “a sovereign state whose ultimate power rests in its citizens, equally entitled to vote who (directly or indirectly) elect representatives to weild that power.” We citizens have the ultimate power on what direction our country, state and local municipality goes. It is the citizens who through voting choose, we hope, the best of our peers to represent us and our voice. I have heard the statement “if you don’t vote then you can’t complain about those elected”. I disagree. It’s more than just voting. It’s being an active participant in the entire process. From elections, to contacting your representatives, to researching the different legislation, to working hard to get your rights and freedoms secured.
No matter what side of the aisle you believe you are on. No matter if you feel you are a winner or loser in this election cycle. You can still be a participant. You won’t get a participation trophy for it. But that’s a whole different rant of mine.
Let me leave you with a quote from President Teddy Roosevelt:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
State Designated Lobbyist, ABATE of Arizona