I was always told that it was better to give than receive. Apparently, that is not the motto for Congress. While everyday people are struggling with the sequester cuts, Congress just before flying back to their home districts last weekend, passed a bill to ease the airport delays brought on by the sequester cuts affecting air traffic controllers. Meanwhile the rest of everyday American citizens are still struggling with cuts resulting from the sequester. Yet, Congress saw fit that business travelers and members of Congress were not inconvenienced by the airport cuts across the country. The sequester is still affecting Head Start programs, senior programs, unemployment, student aid like federal work study programs federal disaster programs and jobs just to name a few.
For many senior citizens who are struggling to make it from month to month, the sequester cuts Meals on Wheels programs. For those recently affected by disaster, the sequester cut FEMA and threatens to cut disaster relief. For those working parents struggling to afford child care, the sequester cuts subsidiaries for 30,000 children. For many families who are struggling to stay in affordable housing, the sequester cuts affect rental assistance and programs aimed at preventing homelessness. Yet, Congress chooses to think of itself first and prevent any inconvenience to their going home trips. Even Senator John McCain stated “I think we have our priorities a little bit skewed here.” And Ellen Hollander, president and CEO of Meals on Wheels stated “it’s perplexing that we’re saving programs that are inconveniencing others , but we’re not saving programs that are saving lives.” And cancer doctors like Dr. Willia Nibley from Utah states that he would invite anyone from Washington to look at his patients and explain why waiting for a flight is a bigger deal than waiting longer or traveling farther to get chemotherapy.
Until we fix what’s broken in Washington, the sequester will continue to affect families and everyday people. And what’s broken in Washington is our present Congress. 2014 is the next Congressional election. And we must start thinking now of how to replace those members of Congress who think more of giving gifts to themselves rather than helping to give jobs and necessities to the American people who they are elected to serve.
The programs and jobs cut by sequester are not hand -outs or entitlements. They are agencies and programs that help everyday Americans to succeed. And speaking of jobs, when will Congress fix the economy and job situation. Despite some improvement in the economy, some people have just stopped looking for jobs. And others are still waiting on Congress to help clean up the economy. But like Senator John McCain says, Congress has its priorities a little skewed. In reality, the Republican controlled Congress has its priorities aimed at itself and not the American people.