We need more independence in politics

The flaws of many Republican and Democratic candidates are duplicity (saying one thing and doing another) and a lack of moral integrity (favoritism, hiding facts, rationalization, abusing power — including sexually — and self-importance).

We cannot continue to allow lack of bipartisanship in politics. It’s crippling our country.

We cannot continue to ignore it while our country funds programs blindly (ignoring fraud or price gouging) and accrues debt, letting taxes skyrocket and Social Security and welfare programs potentially go bankrupt.

We cannot ignore unemployment, negotiate ineffectively in foreign relations, or let politicians sling mud on a third-grade level.

Politicians’ speechwriters are pushing our buttons: “Don’t trust my opponent. Get free government benefits with lower taxes or perpetually low premiums.” We are so gullible.

Political candidates should be generally educated on effective management of the main issues required to establish financial stability, civil harmony and national security. Shared educational background with advisors would lead to better problem solving.

Locally, we should progressively move on (with understanding) from issues with questionable politics in eras gone by. I’ve read opinions on the Civil War (states’ rights vs. perpetuating slavery). It seems to me that Lincoln’s letter to Horace Greeley, established Lincoln’s official neutrality on slavery (with the Union preserved) and pointed to states’ rights as the central issue.

At the same time, there was fear of economic/agricultural collapse in the South, justifying a biblical textual rationalization of slavery. Leaders had perpetuated slavery and inequality by rationalization since 1619.

I defer to the online article in the Encyclopedia Virginia regarding controversy on R.E. Lee.

We know people are created equal; after that our life’s choices define us. How do we act or treat other people?

What we need are programs, funded by philanthropists, to politically educate the public and also to fund campaigns for different-minded, independent presidential candidates — those with no party affiliation. This might help provide the impartiality and brutal honesty that voters need about which issues are critical to the candidates and where they would negotiate.

Until then I’m continuing to vote independently — if I can find a qualified candidate. I know, I’m just throwing my vote away, but it’s my small message to the powers that be.

Bryan Chambers

Fluvanna County

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