2016 campaign rancor spoils the process

Re: Can we all get along?

This election season is baffling and disturbing to me. For years, we have taught our children to respect women, those with disabilities, other cultures and religions and those that are “different.” In other words, we have tried to treat others as we would like to be treated – the “Golden Rule.” But (Donald) Trump and (Ted) Cruz seem to label this as “political correctness” and have made it popular to discard decades of civility to one another.

It is obvious that the presidency of (Barack) Obama has not been a smooth one. President Bush left an economic collapse, a large debt, ongoing job losses, and two major wars to be resolved among other things. And on top of that, the Republicans were so out-of-sorts at losing the election that they openly promised that they would not work with this president but would do everything they could to make sure his presidency was a failed one. So when President Obama adopted the Republican plan to give more Americans health care, the Republicans would have nothing to do with it even though it was their plan to start with. The Republicans also fought against the Iran Nuclear Agreement and the Paris Agreement on climate change – both essential for the wellbeing of the world community.

So it is understandable why so many people are angry at our government and are drawn to Trump even though his hateful rhetoric is full of promises that he cannot fulfill or that would be disastrous. The Republicans in Congress have done almost nothing for seven years so President Obama has worked around them doing the best he could to make life better for all of us. Of course, things would have gone smoother and would have turned out much better if everyone had worked together. That’s what a Democracy is all about. And the Supreme Court might have had nine members by this time if the Republicans had followed the constitution.

It seems like the Republicans are still living in the past and just don’t “get it.” We are a nation of immigrants – a melting pot – that make us a much stronger nation through our diversity. We are a nation of many religions – not one particular religion. We do not single out certain people that we will not serve in our businesses; we do not discriminate. We are a nation of laws. “We the people” are the government so we pay our taxes so that we can educate our children, maintain a safety net and provide health care for those that need it, maintain our infrastructure and pay for law enforcement among other things. We need to invest in our people instead of war and we need to stop locking up more people than any other nation in the world. I believe we all want the same things in life; we just have different ways to get there and we need to work together to make it happen.

When I see the rancor among our presidential candidates and each other, I think of Rodney King’s question during the 1992 Los Angeles riots: “… Can we all get along?”

Carol Lazear Mitchell