BY SHARON MARTIN
It is easy to understand the seeds of discontent that have sprouted in the hearts of American voters. It’s hard to make a living. Real wages haven’t grown in decades, but the prices keep going up. There are too many people demanding too many services. We’re tired of paying for what we don’t get.
The latest election reflects our dissatisfaction. Here is what we asked for: personal freedom and a chance to achieve the American dream. Here’s what we got: a bill of goods sold to us by a handful of billionaires who want freedom from taxes for their billions, freedom from regulations for their operations, and freedom to hire us at peon wages with no hope of employee negotiations. Meanwhile, they stand in line for our tax dollars to achieve their own ends.
“Taxation without representation” wasn’t a cry for freedom from taxes but a demand that citizens had a voice in how those tax dollars were spent. The organizers of this latest party want to pay no taxes. If they get what they want, removal of the income tax, watch out for property taxes and sales taxes to skyrocket. They play; we pay.
In the early days, citizens of a town would raise money to build a school and hire a teacher. They knew the money they threw into the kitty would gain interest in the next generation. They helped each other build barns and houses. In the most prosperous settlements, people worked together for the good of the entire community.
Likewise, our taxes should be an investment in our communities and our states, not a gift program for the greedy. Our money should buy us roads to drive on, schools for our children, access to health care and a safe food supply. It shouldn’t subsidize corporations, factory farms, or military regimes on another continent.
We’ve been lied to, tons of bull manure shoveled over the seeds of our discontent. Let’s pull ourselves out of the compost and make demands of our elected officials. First, however, decide what those demands might be. Don’t let the greedy dupe you with their version of the truth. For the first freedom we must demand is the freedom to think for ourselves. If we get this freedom, all the other freedoms will follow.
– Sharon Martin lives in Oilton, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer