America we have a serious problem. To be honest we have several problems, but at the root of all of them is our inability to come together and meet the challenges of our day. It wasn’t always like this, over our 236 year history we have pulled together to achieve many great and seemingly impossible things. Why is this not true today? Well, because of a list of problems including a largely disengaged and woefully ill-informed electorate, billions spent by the rich to influence our politics, and out-of-touch politicians who are not held accountable for their actions. The system we have to solve these problems is the media. Intended to be the fourth estate of government, the most important check we have and the key to participating in our democracy. Unfortunately, today most media outlets are simply branches of large corporations.1 They sell the product of news you want to hear, tailored to specific audiences and designed to draw as much profit as possible, even if that means being dishonest. That kind of news may fool many people, but I have to believe that the majority could see through disingenuous journalism if they only tried a little. So what’s left? Just us. The voting public that strives to understand the complex issues of our day and only want the best for our country. This was always intended to be a government of the people, by the people, for the people. Today the internet gives us a chance to make that a reality. We must wage the war of ideas ourselves and force the conversations we need to have. We cannot rely on our politicians right now, but we know how to fix that. If we put enough public support, or discontent, behind issues that basically all of us agree on we can move our country in the right direction.
The 2010 mid-term elections was a pivotal day in US history. At the federal level this gave Republicans control of the House of Representatives and a near majority in the Senate. This resulted in gridlock that has stalled Washington since.2 This only worsened the attitude of absolute defiance capsulated by Mitch McConnell’s statement that their top priority was insuring Barack Obama was a one-term president.3 They abuse the filibuster.4 The unprecedented use means nearly everything has to have a 60 vote majority to pass. This congress is one of the least productive ever.5 On the state level, Republicans increased their influence across the country.6 The legislation they chose to enact tells us how they want our country to be. This is both the most exciting and dangerous time in American political history. A great battle is being waged daily, and most people are blind to it. Republicans are taking many unprecedented steps in rolling back our rights. I, like many of you, feel something has to be done before its too late. Over the next few pages I will discuss some of the most egregious laws put into place since the tidal wave of 2010 and the Republican Party in general. Please know that I am only interested in discussing facts. To prove this I have included 159 sources so that you can have all the information yourself.
2. Voting Rights
3. Women’s Rights
5. Union Rights
6. Gun Rights
7. Why All This Should Have Been Prevented: Crisis of 2008
8. The Difference between Democrats and Republicans
9. The way forward