National Politics Made Personal
The year was 1984, and Republican Party candidate Ronald Reagan was running for his second term as President of the United States. He was opposed by the Democratic Party nominee Walter Mondale, who served as the Democratic President Jimmy Carter’s Vice President in the mid to late 1970’s. At the time of the election where Ronald Reagan defeated Jimmy Carter in 1980, I was among the few people who held a strong endorsement and loyalty to Carter. In 1984, I was dismayed by the policies Reagan enacted during his first term as President. Among them was Reaganomics, an economic policy which stated that if the wealthiest citizens of the United States were financially rewarded, the benefits would trickle down to all members of the population. Also, another Reagan policy I was in disagreement with was the deep cuts in social and domestic programs which benefited the lower middle classes the working class, and the poor. “I can see it happening. Ronald Reagan’s policies are only giving the upper classes extreme financial rewards. The upper classes are reaping in all these financial benefits, while the lower classes are suffering because the financial rewards aren’t trickling down to the lower classes,” I said to my friend Dave at election time in 1984. “Wait and see. Soon, there is going to be a vast increase in the number of people living in poverty without any assistance or aid, and the homeless population is going to vastly increase,” Dave responded. There was indeed a vast increase in the homeless population. When President Jimmy Carter of the Democratic Party was President of the United States just previous to Ronald Reagan in the mid-to-late 1970’s, I was actually impressed and satisfied with his policies. Carter was a firm supporter of organized labor, believed in the value of domestic programs, and championed against human rights abuses world-wide. However, most people believed Carter was ineffectual and ineffective. Carter lost his 1980 re-election bid against Reagan. I continued to hold a profound liking and approval of Carter. In 1984, I wrote Jimmy Carter a personal letter, and sent it to him at his office in Atlanta, Georgia. In the letter I sent to Carter, I stated, “You were one of the best and original President there ever was. Your policies were top notch, and right on line. The service you performed for this country was immense. I have a lot of strong emotions and feelings of love, appreciation and gratitude for the United Sates, and I would like to share them with you,” I stated in my letter to Carter. I shortly thereafter received a personal reply from Carter. It said, “I am extremely grateful for your kind words of appreciation for the service I provided for the nation, as well as your kind words of support. I equally share your loyalty and devotion to this great nation of the United States of America,” Carter wrote. In turn, Jimmy Carter placed me on the mailing list of the Democratic National Committee. At the current date, the summer and fall of 2012, the election consisting of incumbent Democratic Party candidate Barack Obama pitted against Republican Party nominee Mitt Romney are involved in a fierce run for the White House. Because Jimmy Carter placed me on the Democratic National Committee’s mailing list, I have been receiving letters signed from President Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Leader,” I said to Dave, who continued to be my friend. “They must consider you to be a very important and distinguished person for them to write to you,” Dave said to me. “They don’t care about me personally. All they’re interested in and want from me is money, and they’re looking out for their own personal self-interests,” I replied to Dave. The priorities that the Democratic National Committee are focusing on include sharply reducing benefits for the ultra-rich and corporations, reward, provide incentives to, and strengthen the middle class, secure Social Security and Medicare, strengthen environmental policies, and guarantee women’s access to reproductive services. “Perhaps now the democratic Party has the political structure and support to succeed today with Barack Obama as their nominee for President, whereas in the case with Jimmy Carter, the Democratic Party wasn’t as grounded or as firmly established as today. Perhaps today more people are giving the Democratic Party more credit than before,” I said to Dave. The voting public looks at Obama more favorably than they did to Carter. “It’s truly going to be an election to keep an eye on. Both the Democratic and Republican Parties have their political machines set in high gear attempting to influence the election. However, ultimately, it will be for the people to decide in the voting booth,” Dave responded. The Democratic National Committee sent me a continuous series of letters, constantly soliciting me for campaign contributions of $20.00, $30.00 or $40.00. All I did was make a single contribution of $15.00.