Summit Daily letters to the editor: Local politics and supreme obfuscation
Support Dudick for town council
With so many great candidates in the race for town council, I just wanted to give a personal shout out for Mike Dudick. I had the pleasure and privilege of mentoring three of his children through Summit County Youth (SCY). In fact, that’s how I first met him. Over the past 15 years, I have learned more and more what a generous individual he is.
Mike’s previous term on town council and the numerous ways he gives back locally both demonstrate how he cares about our mountain home and its future. I feel like his perspective is tapped into the pulse of our community, and I genuinely appreciate his commitment to our town. And I’m excited that upon moving back to be a full-time resident again, he’s willing to dive right back in to help solve the various issues facing us like housing, parking and transit. I know that Mike will continue to be active for the good of our community regardless of the outcome of the race, and that’s the kind of person I want to be hard at work as a voice on town council.
It’s such a wonderful place in which we live, and we are truly lucky to have such an amazing group of people running for town council to represent us as a whole. I encourage everyone to learn more about Mike as well as the other candidates and to vote in the upcoming election.
Supreme obfuscation from the GOP
Refusing to even meet, let alone hold hearings on President Obama’s nominee for the United States Supreme Court, Justice Merrick Garland, Sen. Mitch McConnell and his fellow Republican senators’ tactic is yet another ill-conceived ploy in an ever growing list of GOP stumbles, gaffs and miscalculations. Anyone with any sense of statistics and any understanding of the Democrats’ past electoral successes can foresee the walloping the GOP will take in the coming elections. You cannot alienate the Hispanic and African American segments of the population and expect to win … not if their people show up in large numbers to vote. You also ought not duck your constitutionally-mandated responsibilities.
Given the Republican candidates’ stances on immigration and their retro arguments on equal opportunity and their ignoring and disrespecting issue-oriented groups like Black Lives Matter, given that their appeal is to but a narrow segment of the American populace which is mostly made up of blue collar, white males: How can they expect to win much of anything? The writing has been on the wall for eight years, and yet the GOP has refused to absorb the need to reach out to these disaffected groups. Now displaying yet again the intransigence and Tea Party attitude of unwillingness to entertain a spirit of cooperation and compromise, given the need to fill the vacant seat on SCOTUS, in essence closing the court to critical work that should and must be done, McConnell and his colleagues once again have shut down one branch of our government, at least in terms of cases that can only end in a four-to-four ties, thus forcing those cases back down to lower courts.
Of course, the bickering which involves a history of both parties’ blockages of the other’s nominees is being trotted out as if this childish blame game gets the country anywhere. Then, too, there is McConnell’s ridiculous suggestion that should the Democrats win the election, only then would he entertain hearings on the suitability of Justice Garland for the seat Justice Antonin Scalia’s untimely death vacated. What? Does the GOP now fear that a post-election nomination would be more liberal so that an approval of Justice Garland then would be the lesser of evils for them? The cynicism of this offer, the utter transparency of its attempts at political manipulation would be laughable if it weren’t so apparently brazen. It is to say, well, we admit that Justice Garland is worthy of consideration but only if the circumstances meet our requirements.
This is the kind of stonewalling and obduracy that has produced candidates like Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. Americans are sick of this kind of congressional gridlock and are enraged that it applies to this situation as well. But, McConnell can only see the short-term benefit of blocking hearings. He cannot perceive the damage that doing so does to his GOP’s reputation. The blindness seems to be as much endemic as it is and will be self-defeating.
The fact that this president or any president is constitutionally mandated to appoint a replacement for an open seat on the nation’s highest court seems lost on the petulant McConnell. It isn’t that this president had a choice. That McConnell is using a political tool to avoid and block Congressional responsibility now appears to represent the quality of a broken record, which replicates itself in blatant obstructionism. It not only doesn’t reflect well on the institution of Congress which has devolved to an ultimate in polarity and an inability to act; it places the Republican Party in the position of being the party of “NO.” “No” to the need to reach out to what has now become the plurality of American voters, “no” to offering realistic solutions which involve compromise and vision and “no” to the nation’s need to believe that it has a government that can actually work, as well as a two party system both of whose entities represent ideologies of fairness, civility, decency and effectiveness.
Rabbi Joel R. Schwartzman
A whistle while you scam
Over the past year or so, I have had at least one or two, sometimes more calls a week from the folks Phil Huff recently described in a letter to the editor. I have begged, pleaded and at times shouted to, “Please take my name off list and leave me alone!” I have blocked phone numbers from any number of states, but always same computer company, using a different phone number, calls to tell me I have a problem, which they can fix.
The calls may continue forever, but I have found a way to exercise some control. I have a very loud WHISTLE. Now, when I get a call and they introduce themselves, I say, “Since you refuse to remove me from your list, this is my response.” I blow the whistle as loud and long as I can! Boy, it feels good!
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