Tuesday, June 5, 2007

"You never write, you never call....."

On April 25th, 2007, I became aware of an opportunity for members of Congress to view the documentary “Islam vs. the Islamists” that evening. This is a film that was funded with taxpayer money. PBS then refused to air the film because certain Islamic groups had pressured them not to. I sent an email to my congressman as well as my senators urging them to view the film. I received the typical automated email reply from all three.

Yesterday, June 4, 2007, I received an email from a member of my congressman’s staff. The staff person asked me to call and discuss the email and so I did exactly that today. It turns out that I am the only one who wrote to the congressman about viewing the film. The congressman and his staff seemed to be completely oblivious about the whole situation. I explained it as best I could. I have since sent an email to the staff person with links to articles that describe the film and what has been done with it.

What should we all learn from this? Our representatives are busy people. They really can’t keep up with everything that goes on in the world. If you think an issue is important, then you have to let them know. This may have been just a fluke incident, but I’m trying to take it as a hopeful sign that our voices can be heard.

Our federal government is a behemoth. It is very easy to get discouraged by its unresponsiveness. I have voted every year since 1979. Many times I wonder why I bother. However, I have seldom taken the time to write letters to congress. It’s time for we the people to participate in our government. I look around and sometimes think that this country is out of control and can do nothing but go into its final death spiral. Maybe that’s true, but maybe not. Either way, the United States of America is our country and we can’t let it go without a fight.

Get involved. Whatever your pet issue is, fight for it. Do something to make your country better. Whether it is local, state or federal, do something to make your opinions known.

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