Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — I read Facebook all day long because I have no one to talk to. That is not as pathetic as it sounds. It is my choice to work by myself in my home office and I rather like it that way. But having the entire country connected is a pretty dangerous proposition. Mostly because people do not get facts before they form opinions. And after developing those uninformed opinions, they feel it necessary to insult anyone who opposes them.
I’ve met a few people who follow the popular lines of thought on big issues, and they’re scary. They detest the question “Why do you feel that way?,” acting like it’s an un-American thing to ask. You either do what everyone else does, say what everyone else says, or you are un-American. In my day, they used to call you a commie. These days, they call you a terrorist. Same mannequin, different costume.
The thing that concerns me is the complete lack of understanding that the average American has when it comes to government. I’ve spent the past week reading comments like, “Let the government stay shut down, it doesn’t affect me!” or “Now that they are shut down, maybe they will shut up.”
House Republicans need to realize you cannot hold something hostage that does not realize it is being held hostage. The American public, as a naïve and ignorant collective, has no idea it is being held hostage; it sees this shutdown as a good thing.
So while a small group of radical Republicans continue to think that they are bringing pressure on Democrats to give up whatever it is Republicans want, the radicals are wrong. There is no pressure because no one understands what is going on.
The shutdown directly affects less than 10 percent of the American workforce. Approximately 1 million government workers were furloughed, but some of them are being forced to work without pay. To those poor people, this shutdown is very real and a huge problem. But since our culture espouses “me first” and “gimme”, anyone who is not a government worker does not care about government workers because everyone else kept their job.