In April I submitted an opinion article expressing the power of the people through voting. The recent election of Democrat Kathy Hochul to a republican majority held district in New York state is a testament to that power. The decisions we make when we vote are a powerful means of communication with our elected representatives.
The turmoil within our country demands that we be informed as to exactly what our elected officials are doing or are not doing for the constituents that have chosen them for representation.
It seems, with increasing frequency, certain states are busy passing legislation that is slowly chipping away at our rights as American citizens.
In Wisconsin, stripping union members of collective bargaining rights; In Ohio, passing legislation requiring certain forms of ID, specifically meant to hinder voter ability to participate; In Texas, legislation hindering a woman's access to health care services, specifically requiring a woman to have a sonogram before terminating a pregnancy to provoke feelings of remorse. And most recently the Ryan Budget presented to the house and passed explicitly making radical changes to Medicare, a health care entitlement program bought and paid for by every working American.
The people have been standing tall and voicing their objections most recently at town hall forums here in Pennsylvania.
In order to suppress these objections Representatives Barletta and Marion have announced that they are banning video and audio recordings of their town hall meetings in the interest of keeping the constituents safe! Safe from what?? Ourselves? Or is it keeping their selves safe in their seat as representatives by denying their constituents the right to bring recording devices to public meetings. This is a direct attempt to keep the public uninformed about the overwhelming discontent about their positions and voting record on the issues at hand. It is a direct attempt to limit information about challenges they receive at their town halls from reaching other constituents not present. The consensus being one that if you think you are alone in your objections, you'll remain quiet about them.
Once again, the power of the people is being challenged. And, once again, we must step up and be heard. We cannot, should not and will not tolerate this form of suppression on our rights.
Mr. Barletta and Mr. Marino, your over reaching attempt to deprive your constituents of information will not succeed. 2012 is just around the corner.
We will persevere, we will win, we will VOTE!