January 1, 2013

A note to Congress...

Dear Congress,

I am a non-paid blogging mother of one, who would like to reiterate what the rest of the country seems to be saying and what you seem to be ignoring.  Day after day you show up telling yourselves you are leading this country, but to me you seem to be doing nothing more than what a group of third graders do on the playground when there is one basket of balls and way too many kids who want to play.  The loudest, biggest, and strongest kids seem to always win out and the weaker sit back and hope they can score a ball tomorrow.

While my analogy may appear pedantic, I think it rings true.  You have those who are the heavy hitters of Washington.  We see them every night on CNN and Fox (depending on their political affiliation, of course), they show up on Sunday morning with the country's golden journalists, and they manage to show themselves looking important and relevant proudly photographed with other must- know leaders on the cover of the morning paper.  So here's my point...none of that is leadership.  It's smoke and mirrors and it is getting us nowhere.

I have made many comments about my admiration for the program Morning Joe. If you happen to live on the west coast, you are out of luck unless you are an insomniac and are awake between the hours of 3~6 am.  The show incorporates many players on both sides of the aisle, but the main two are Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough.  Mika is a longtime journalist, who emerged from a very influential Washington family of political heavy hitters.  Her father was a National Security Advisor during the Carter administration.  So basically, she's a well-educated smarty pants, who comes from an equally smarty pants family.  Now you have Joe Scarborough.  Joe is a Florida native.  He was a lawyer turned congressman turned cable news guy.  Joe a Republican..Mika a Democrat...and the show has that certain je ne sais quoi.... On a daily basis they discuss and debate the issues and concerns of the country and the world, and they do it the way politicians and reporters used to do it.  With style, grace, and articulate thoughts.  More importantly, it is never personal, mean spirited, or ugly.  It is the kind of reporting that allows you to hear the other side without becoming offended or personally attacked.  And interestingly, by interacting in such a way, I have found myself to be influenced and sometimes swayed by the arguments of the opposing argument.  Imagine that!

With that, I say to the men and women we have entrusted to be the voice of the people, take a moment and watch Morning Joe.  Rather than grandstanding on your respective cable news shows, we want to see you debating in the two chambers of Congress.  We want to be inspired by the deep seeded conviction that caused you to originally enter the sub-culture of politics.  I truly believe that we, as a nation, want to see you belly up to the proverbial table and come away with results that have the greatest impact for all.  Sadly, we have fallen into the rut of "you're either with us or against us."  And that has only been a lucrative venture for the powers that be in cable news.

Maybe I am being naive but I can't help but believe that if you took a page out of the Morning Joe handbook, you might just be able to move forward, have respectable debates, and model to the country that just because you don't see eye to eye on an issue, the United States can continue to evolve and remain the great super power that we have always believed it to be.

Oh...and by the way...it is way more fun to play with one ball and a big group of kids than just stand around bouncing a ball all by yourself.


Julie Meulemans

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