Saturday, December 28, 2013

A Holiday Dream for an Effective Government

While listening to TV news analysts and political comedians lately, I am appalled once again that our government is so inefficient and full of rampant and radical divisions. Our leaders fight with each other, like elementary school kids at recess, blaming each other for the state of our nation, both sides feeling bullied by the other. Is this is a battle to the death, a civil war that pits each one of us against the other?  I have a dream that does not include bullying.

At first, I dream about a government with the majority of its leaders being women who look like me.  I feel cozy and nurtured in this dream, and I see things getting done, bills being passed, laws being implemented and evaluated effectively.  But then, the dream changes to a more powerful proposition.

My dream transforms to include not only women as leaders but some men too. Not only white women, but women and men of color, of different races, backgrounds, creeds and sexual orientations.  This dream includes people of all genders plus young people who are committed to working together in multigenerational and multicultural teams.

These excellent leaders create a system for effective communications with their constituents, asking for input and representing rather than following. They care about all people no matter whether they are rich or poor.  Corporations cannot control them and they do what is best for all of the people they serve, not just for the business sector.

In my dream, we have a government of the People, by the People, and for the People.  But, I wonder if we can truly implement such a dream? We have moved so far away from this dream, that many have turned away from politics, believing that our government will never change so why even get involved?  That way lies madness. 

Do we leave decisions that affect each of our lives up to people who campaign for a living?  Leave our children to grow up in a world where we don’t count, we don’t have any power to help our leaders make life long decisions about how we work, what we eat, where we sleep, how we educate our children, and how our children get sent off to wars to fight our battles in other lands?  Our battles that are focused mostly on economic desires, and perhaps greed? 

My dream has an ending.  But, getting to that ending entails a lot of tough, hard work.  It calls for us all to leave our homes and engage with others about what we think would be good for our country. In my holiday dream, I see everyone having the energy, time, interest and enthusiasm for helping us all help each one of us, realizing that if we don’t work together, someone else will make decisions for us. And then, we cannot live in a free democracy.  I hope it is not too late.

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