Our government: Shutdowns, withheld truth and the matter of life

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Try as I might, itís really hard not to have something to say about the political landscape before us.

Iíve stayed away from politics for a while, but Iím really finding it hard to hold my tongue. Now of course I realize that readers are not all going to agree with my respective take ó but just like the title of this column suggests ó itís ďOne Manís Perspective.Ē

Where to begin. Letís start with the big topic which began at midnight Friday, the government shutdown. Whatís really going on here is a political game of football here with a number of vital government services ó beginning with the men and women of a military ó serving as the football in the battle of this game of field position.

As the father of a U.S. Marine, I take personal exception to our countryís budget being held hostage. My son, and his male and female comrades in arms just like him around the globe, are out protecting our country and serving U.S. interests. In my sonís case, the service places him on an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf. Back home, his newlywed wife, whom he left behind in South Carolina during his deployment, works as a nurse and will be forced to maintain their household without his income. The reasoning, a collective group of elected officials sitting in Washington, D.C., canít discern the difference between playing politics and taking care of those who put their lives on the line everyday to protect our country.

An agreement to extend government operations ó keeping our vital services such as border control and military people cared for was placed on the table which the House passed ó narrowly I might add ó and the Senate rejected it. Why? Well, DACA for one. Although DACA is in place for another couple of months, it was used as a tool to try and hold the extension agreement hostage.

Personally I agree, there needs to be some changes to our immigration system ó both to expedite the efforts of those trying to come in legally, and to dramatically slow the influx of those who would enter our country illegally. But such an argument and resolution has no attachment to the issue at hand and to use this as a leverage piece, knowing the impact it will have on those trusted with providing for the safety and security of our nation ó and their families ó is inexcusable. Hopefully by the time this column runs, this matter will be resolved. Fingers crossed.

Next, Iím a bit concerned over the House Intelligence Committee report regarding allegations of alleged FISA surveillance abuse. Republican members of the House have called information in the classified report ďshocking,Ē suggesting if covers a wide variety of topics including the FBI, FISA abuses, the Russian dossier, and alleged Russian collusion involving President Donald Trump.

I have no doubt eventually all of this is going to go public, the problem is how long is it going to take and why is their party offering differing opinions on whether the American people deserve to know the truth.

Iím a bit disgusted that our elected officials have not yet made the information available for the public to view. These are allegations against the president ó allegations foes of Trump have been insisting they wanted out there since he took office and the Russian collusion matter became part of the public dialogue.

Now we have them, so why are the American people being denied the opportunity to see the findings for ourselves? Especially after theyíve been made available to those who weíve elected to represent us ó many of whom believe they should be made public.

And finally, the March for Life. Think what you want about Donald Trump, and I know many of you do, but he has lent his support and placed his voice behind the life of unborn like no other president has, literally. He participated live in the ďLifeĒ movement by speaking directly to those involved in the effort. This is reportedly the first time a U.S. president has directly spoken live at the event, although he is not the first to show support for the cause.

This has never been a political issue for me, although I admit it has impacted where I cast my ballot in certain contested races.

The issue of life isnít about politics. Itís not a Republican versus Democrat or conservative versus liberal matter. Itís a God thing ó pure and simple.

Thereís only one way for a man and woman to create a life. And Iím not going to get into the birds and bees here, but suffice it to say thatís where the real ďchoiceĒ comes into play.

After that, once conception takes place, itís life. You know how you can tell, itís growing. And if you want to argue whether itís a human life, well I guess I would ask what other kind of life it would be. If two humans created it, canít hardly be an aardvark or a dolphin. Sadly, if it were an aardvark or a dolphin, there would probably be more people wiling to defend it.

Thanks to all who publicly stand boldly and proudly behind the cause of life. If we elect a government not willing to protect the most defenseless among us, why would we expect them to protect us. Someday, hopefully in the near future, we will put an end to the horrific practice of late-term abortions and then begin to find alternatives for those seeking abortions ... and someday, perhaps we can eliminate this ďchoiceĒ from the American vocabulary.

Today, I proudly stand with the president and those who this weekend stood, marched and spoke out for the unborn. And I say that strongly because I firmly believe that is where God stands on this issue. I canít think of any instance where our Creator would say itís OK to deliberately end the life of a child in the womb of its mother. As a matter of fact I would challenge any Christian to offer what they think would be the winning argument they would make if called before God and asked to defend the right to abort a child. Iíve put that challenge out there before ... and Iím still waiting.