In just two hours and seventeen minutes, the federal government – in all likelihood – will be shutting down for the most part because (in my opinion) a handful of people want to fight against a law that has already been passed and ruled constitutional by the Supreme Court.
And, of course, a law that will still go into effect REGARDLESS of a government shutdown. No, really.
As I’ve watched the news today and followed along on social media, I feel a singular weariness that can only come from feeling so completely and utterly unrepresented by our government – a feeling I share with most Americans, regardless of our political leanings. I want to shake my fists at the sky in fury, but I can’t quite find the strength to lift up my arms in protest yet again. After all, it doesn’t help. It never changes anything. Our politicians just continue barrelling down a path further and further away from those of us they serve.
As a political liberal, I support the Affordable Care Act. It will make a huge difference for our family, and for the families of so many people I know. Not a little bit of difference, either – a huge, massive difference that in some cases will actually be lifesaving. I’m very happy that the law is going into effect tomorrow.
More than two thirds of my mother’s income comes from her monthly social security check.* If she were to lose her social security (which, thankfully, she will not), she would find it challenging to pay her rent, purchase food, or even buy the prescriptions she needs. My husband and I would be there to help her, of course, and we’re lucky that we will actually be able to do so – but many, many families that are employed by the federal government and the military, who WILL lose their income, will be put in that same bad position because of this shutdown.
This is insanity. Millions of Americans – you know, VOTERS – will lose their ability to feed their families because of political grandstanding. When you step back from it a bit, it’s appalling. Just unbelievably appalling.
With any luck, you’ll be reading this tomorrow morning and the grandstanding will have stopped, and the government will re-open as usual. This is my hope, anyway. Hell, my prayer.
Please, Congress. For the love of God, do your jobs and take care of your people. We need you.
* In the first publication of this post, I’d been incorrectly informed that social security payments would be affected. I apologize for the error.