Sheldon: Politics as usual needs to go
I read with intetest the recent Vail Daily article about the upcoming political season. Interest yes, but also disappointment.
It appears both political parties continue to concentrate on what the other party cannot or does not do. Both parties are equally guilty. Rather than tell us what they can do for us, they focus on telling us how bad their opponent is. Lest anyone call me a hypocrite, yes, I too have been guilty of negative political opinions and judgments.
Unfortunately, when the objective is putting others down, progress can only be thwarted. No one wins.
As a businessperson and veterinarian, I was able to achieve success by following what my mentors taught me: Talk about the good things you have to offer. The other business or doctor is your colleague, not your competitor. Thrive on your own achievements and merits, not the deficiency of others.
We teach this to our children. You don’t say, “Coach, our QB sucks, put me in.” No, you say, “Coach, I can get the job done, put me in!”
Today’s politician is most skilled in the art of destruction, not construction. Instead of telling us how we can move forward, they merely tell us how the other person or party is keeping us behind.
I believe it is our duty as voters to root or vote out the bad and support the good. The constituency suffers when we got bogged down in negativity. It is simply not productive.
It is up to us to tell then we have had enough. We need to be politely, yet firmly saying: “We have had enough of this crap, we want to hear how you are going to make our county, state, and country better. Can we please focus on that instead of your opponent’s GED or DUI?”
I don’t think anyone disputes that the current two-party system is antiquated. It has failed us. The political party you are a member of will stab you in the back (I have scars in my back to prove it), while the opposing party will stab you in the chest. This system is literally bleeding us to death in the struggle for power. Did I mention that the constituency suffers?
I believe it is the right climate to look for independent political candidates. Colorado is truly a purple state. A well-funded, grassroots campaign of independent politicians could set the stage for a national movement of like-minded individuals. Perhaps it is too late for the 2022 midterms, but 2024 is not far off.
We have been propagandized to believe that voting for an independent candidate takes a needed vote away from a deserving candidate from one party or the other. Malarky. Some may be deserving people, but have nonetheless morphed into robots voting for what the party whip tells them to vote for.
What could an independent representative or senator do, you ask? Well, the first thing they could do is approach the leader(s) of each party and simply say “Bring me some bills that my constituents and I can support.” One vote does matter. One more delegate vote would have made me a primary candidate for Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District in 2016.
Until a wave of independent candidates happens, let’s start by giving our lost politicians a road map to a higher path of ethics, behavior, and action.
Our country has always professed to integrity, courage, and a sense of decency. Let’s insist it start with our leaders.
Steve Sheldon is an Eagle resident.