Dorton: An open letter to all Congressional members and government officials
Ryan Summerlin November 21, 2012
Dear sir or madam,
We are taking this step in writing to you in hopes of clarifying the meaning of the election on 11/6. It has become increasingly apparent to the electorate that the members of our government have lost sight of several key reasons that you were elected or appointed to office:
1. You are there as a representative of the people to conduct the people’s business to the best of your ability.
2. Your task is not to aspire to make this political job a lifetime career. This public service to our country is a “temp” job. Your real vocation awaits you back home.
3. You are there to make tough choices. No one said this would be easy or popular.
4. There will be times when you must put the good of the country above the needs of the district, state, government official, special interest group or constituency that elected, appointed or helped you win the post that you currently hold. This will be unpopular sometimes and you will be criticized for your decision. That is what real leadership is about.
5. If you are not part of the solution to an issue facing our country, you are part of the problem.
6. You are not in the position you currently hold in order to delay, obstruct and kick the can down the road to the next poor individual that holds your position to avoid making a tough choice. We expect you to make the best call possible for the benefit of the country as a whole. This may at times be diametrically opposed to your personal beliefs, religion, gender, race or political affiliation. That is what real leadership is about.
7. You must be willing to accept the best possible solution that can be attained, given the circumstances that are currently present. This means that obstructing a reasonably good outcome that isn’t perfectly aligned with your particular viewpoint, is not acceptable. You are expected to be willing to compromise. The electorate is fed up with, “my way or the highway.” That is what real leadership is about.
8. It is time for you personally to act in the country’s best interest.
The electorate is neither: blind, deaf, uncaring, intransigent, unpatriotic, unwilling to sacrifice for the good of the country (remember victory gardens and gas rationing?) nor stupid. We have seen where our representatives and government officials have led us over the last four years. A repeat over the next four years is not acceptable. It’s time all of you remember what your mothers taught you about sharing toys and “playing nice in the sandbox.” The days of finger pointing, “he said, she said” and blaming someone else for whatever the result was are over.
You are not just representatives of blue or red states; Democrat or Republican; black, brown or white; old, young or middle aged; wealthy or of modest means; Protestant, Catholic, Mormon or Jewish. You are the representatives of THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, elected or appointed. We the people of The United States, beg you, implore you, urge you, pray you, encourage you to lead us.
Please note that this letter is addressed to members of all parties. Collectively, you are responsible for the leadership you deliver or fail to deliver. Will you accept the challenge to do what is best for all the country over the next four years? We will be watching your actions and pray you find the humility and courage to work together for the benefit of every American.
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
Chris and Shari Dorton,