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Giving Up Our Freedom

                                 By Suzanne P. Kendall

I was recently asked, once again, “Why should I be involved in politics and government? It is all so hopeless.” and my reaction, as always, was such an incredible mix of emotion.   

Initially, I was empathetic because I understood how it seems that we have no effect whatsoever.  It is a huge country and one individual, by him or herself seems to have little real impact. 

At the same time, I was disgusted.  How can the apathetic not remember that they were given a gift by the many who have given their lives – their lives - so that we may remain free?

I thought about all the men and women who left all that they loved and travelled an ocean, in an attempt to escape domination by a monarchy. 

I thought about those, in more recent generations, who felt threatened by the thought of losing the freedoms “guaranteed” by our democratic system; who lived in fear of total domination by governments that neither required, nor desired, citizen participation. 

I reflected on the hundreds of thousands of our citizens who have died violent deaths in wars that they fought in to preserve our rights.

I then wondered what would happen to our country if all the disillusioned people decided to no longer be involved. Unfortunately, it wasn’t that difficult to imagine.

Our democracy would quickly unravel into a country without checks and balances; no longer in need of judicial or legislative branches.  One individual would decide everything and the United States of America would no longer need the input and involvement of the people.

Don’t think that would happen?  I do.  In fact, I believe that it has already begun to happen; so few of us vote and are involved.

Thankfully, I am an optimist, and I won’t slip into depression over the reality that we are allowing a minority to control us.  Instead, I dream about what we could be if every last one of us became actively involved. 

One thing is for certain: it would be absolutely impossible for one percent of the people to maintain control.   


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