Letter: Franklin’s warning
It was reported that when Ben Franklin left the Constitutional Convention in 1787 he was asked what kind of government the delegates were giving the people. He replied, “A Republic, if you can keep it.” In our Republic the people delegate certain powers to the Chief Executive, Congress and Supreme Court in accordance with the provisions of the United States Constitution. In general, the people have respected the ups and downs of historic events and the growth of the federal government over the past 200-plus years. Political Science data suggests, however, that in recent times the people and their representatives have become considerably divided, i.e. liberal versus conservative, about the business that goes on in Washington, D.C. I, for one, have deep concerns that constitutional guidelines have been stretched, that the bureaucracy is too powerful, that taxation practices are vexing, that deficits are in the trillions and climbing, that commitments made to foreign nations, economic or otherwise are not easy to learn about and the list goes on …
The original tea party was not a political party; it was an act in response to the disregard of local interests by the English parliament and became symbolic of the American people’s growing independence. The current tea party adopted the name hoping to attract attention and, it did in 2010. I have generally subscribed to Republican Party guidelines for a long time, but I believe and hope I have always been reasonable in my dealings with others over political issues. Reasonableness has been very lacking in Washington; consequently, our serious problems are not being fixed nor are we as a people being brought together. The American way in most organizations has been to install new leadership when things aren’t working or are in disarray. I would not like to see Ben Franklin’s warning come to pass.
DAVID F. HOWLAND