Through The Looking Glass of State and National Leadership Neglect
‘I don’t care for jam.’
‘It’s very good jam,’ said the Queen.
‘Well, I don’t want any to-day, at any rate.’
‘You couldn’t have it if you did want it,’ the Queen said.
‘The rule is jam tomorrow and jam yesterday but never jam to-day.’
‘It must come sometimes to “jam to-day”,’ Alice objected.
‘No it can’t,’ said the Queen.
‘It’s jam every other day; to-day isn’t any other day, you know.’
‘I don’t understand you,’ said Alice. ‘It’s dreadfully confusing!’
Through the Looking Glass
You really can’t make this stuff up. Another tragic semi-automatic rifle gun massacre. Another total lack of response by our leaders. This mass killing was the worst in U.S. history.
Since my blog in 2013 after the Sandy Hook massacre “My 11 Year Old Daughter Needs Real Gun Control in Our Society” we have had over 100,000 more deaths at the hands of guns in America and countless mass shootings.
The response of our national leaders after the Orlando carnage? Four initiatives were immediately blocked in the Senate for simple basic changes everybody (90%) wants, i.e., (No Fly list- No Buy). Then the spineless House simply called an early summer vacation to squelch any discussion and sent everybody home. Hope they enjoy their cookouts and pool time while 100 people a day get gunned down.
My daughter is nearly 15 now. Nothing has changed. Over 30,000 people a year will continue to die each year. I have low expectations for change. Our leaders do not really govern anymore- they exist too often primarily to get themselves re-elected. It’s a nice gig. The majority of members of our US Congress are millionaires. The Lobby money is real good. It takes courage and a commitment to serve the greater good to actually govern.
On the state level there is equal total lack of responsibility. The 2016 fiscal year in Illinois is coming to a close. Amazingly there is still no budget. The continued negligence and lack of accountability by the Governor and the legislature to carry out the basic function of creating a consensus long term budget to assure basic administrative, educational, public service, safety, and human services has reached crisis proportions. Illinois has the worst credit rating in the country. It is seen as the second worst run state in the country.
There is a crisis in public confidence. Most importantly millions of children, families, students, and elderly in Illinois are suffering due to the inaction by all of our leaders. Hundreds of entities are not getting paid for contracted services they have performed in good faith in the past year. The resulting human service agency crisis is well documented. Over a million clients impacted, over two thirds of agencies reducing or ending services. Short term stopgap solutions are more of the same avoidance of responsibility by all parties involved. Illinois citizens deserve a long term solution to stop the vicious, cynical, and devastating cycle of chronic fiscal uncertainty and crisis.
No, there is no jam TODAY. There is jam tomorrow. There is jam yesterday. But never any jam TODAY.
It is time to end this complete unexplainable negligence of duty by paid public servants for such basic safety and wellbeing actions like gun control and a state budget solution. I am not very optimistic. Unfortunately until we have term limits, remove lobbyist money, and the corporations as people campaign finance regulations still exist- our democratic system will be co-opted too often by money, not your vote. Until such systemic changes take place, or our leaders summon the courage to actually govern and find solutions, there can be little progress.
Until then, people will keep dying. People will keep suffering.
No, there is never any Gun Control TODAY. There is never any Budget TODAY.
There is never any jam TODAY.
By Anthony Riordan