Letters to the Editor

Bipartisan or Bystander?

fe4114f9b5fff7c82843_mini_magick20170716-1135-1gyo802.jpg
fe4114f9b5fff7c82843_mini_magick20170716-1135-1gyo802.jpg

Bipartisan or Bystander?

Bipartisanship means active, often contentious, yet respectful  cooperation, (and ultimate compromise), between two political parties for the ultimate betterment of their constituents. It is creating productive discussion to achieve a synthesis of ideas. Thus, the welfare of the people always comes before party loyalty. 

It's also about speaking up. "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." Martin Luther King, Jr.'s words are as relevant now as they were in Selma in 1965.

Sign Up for E-News

Bipartisanship is now temporarily lost because our political divisions run deep, and because the leadership in Washington has managed to dismantle any semblance of reasonable protocol. The executive branch is now our democracy’s most reckless caretaker. 

This means that local responsibility to defend our democratic institutions becomes that much greater. National issues are local issues and we cannot fear that discussion. Archibald MacLeish said: “Democracy is always something that a nation must be doing.” 

Kitty Genovese was an American woman who was stabbed to death outside her apartment in Queens in 1964 as most of her neighbors failed to come to her aid thus creating the "bystander effect." We cannot be bystanders as toxic rhetoric, conflicts of interest, and lies from the White House continues almost daily. We cannot continue to conveniently look away as our democracy begs for support. 

When 331 cities (from NYC to Ambler, Ohio - pop. 154) representing  more than 65 million Americans in 44 states, aligned with 194 nations that adopted the Paris Climate Accord - and that our president absurdly abandoned -  Summit was a bystander.

When our immigration policy became a debate about bias and discrimination, an open discussion of the relevance (or not) of becoming a sanctuary city, Summit was a bystander. This, despite our Interfaith Council's bravery on the issue and the recent decision of the Beacon Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Summit to become a "sanctuary congregation." 

Make no mistake, Summit and surrounding cities are desperately dependent on an immigrant workforce for domestic work, child care, landscapers, and our restaurants. Should we not protect those who make our lives that much better and care for our most precious assets? National policies have local ramifications that have to be addressed.

Have we heard from our current congressman, (the honorable Leonard Lance) in defense of our sisters, wives and mothers when Trump shames women? A congressman as a bystander is not an option for a moral society needing new leadership.

Our schools speak out clearly on bullying with a policy that clearly condemns and monitors it. Should we, as parents, not condemn the offensive ranting tweets coming from our president that demean minorities --or is he the bully we want our children imitating? 

Trump's cyber bulling and ad hominem attacks would expel any child - and fire any employee - at any school or corporation - anywhere in the United States. There is no fake media, there is only a huckster man-child encircled by loyal sycophants who haplessly stand guard. 

Many of us were relieved to see that the head of the National Education Association, Lily Eskelsen Garcia, the country's largest labor (teacher) union recently spoke of not trusting Trump's and Betsy de Vos ideological agenda in doing what is in the best interest of children. Still, we hear nothing from the leadership of our local teachers union.

Why are the local and state GOP women (or men) not speaking out on Trump's anti-women diatribes? Who is speaking out in Summit for a party that is now being identified with misogyny? 

As importantly, what kind of moral and supportive sons do we raise when we don't exhibit our distaste for our president's innate hate of women? What kind of moral man would accept Trump's demeaning comments to one's mother, wife or sister? I had a mother and have a sister that fought (fights) discrimination in the work place and those of us with mothers, daughters and wives must not sit silent. 

Bystanders are moving back the clock on inclusiveness, denying the good that diversity creates, and damaging the century long progress on gender equality. Please don't tell me that being a bystander is simply a natural instinct for political survival. It is cowardice.

If we continue to wait for our state and local leadership to speak out about the hate propagated in presidential tweets and speeches, we will also watch the national as well as local waters of bigotry around us continue to inch higher, and we will permanently cripple our children's sense of right and wrong. 

It is our duty to strongly speak out and set examples for our sons and daughters when Trump's daily hate speak is commonplace news. Is silence how we interpret the spirit of bipartisanship? Silence will not make our children responsible patriots and defenders of democracy. Patriots come from both sides of the aisle.

Teddy Roosevelt summarizes: "To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.”

George Lucaci 

George Lucaci is a Summit Municipal Democratic Committee member representing Ward I, District 5

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Letter to the Editor.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Summit

Status Report #5

June 20, 2018

As summer fast approaches, this will be my fifth semi-annual status report on what I have been up to on Council.  In a change from the prior two years, this year I have been serving as Council president. As such, I have had greater involvement across a multitude of different issues.  However, I want to focus on three themes that have so far permeated this Council: economic growth and ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_3e68b1f0c65d22cd79bc_d6a71058d531d31a8cff_achievers

Mon, June 25

Summit YMCA, Summit

June 2018 College Tour

Education

Carousel_image_b7bf86ab9b5cba4793d9_347facfa8ac6817752ac_19055513_10158829487705483_8854478692329281822_o

Mon, June 25, 7:45 AM

17 Kent Place Boulevard, Summit

Monday Morning Yoga

Health & Wellness

Summit Police Blotter

June 19, 2018

5/29 - Mark L. Howard, 21, of Nutley was arrested and charged with burglary, theft by unlawful taking and credit card fraud. Mr. Howard was processed and released with a pending court date.

5/29 - At 1143 hours a report was taken for a theft of stolen license plate from a River Road business. The victim reported the last time the license plate was seen on the property was within the ...

What is HIIT and Why All the Buzz?

June 23, 2018

HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training. Many people, especially those with busy schedules, love HITT because they can get maximum benefits in a short period of time! According to Shape Magazine, “Research shows you can achieve more progress in a mere 15 minutes of interval training (done three times a week) than the girl jogging on the treadmill for an hour. And according to ...

Susan G. Komen North Jersey Increases Program Funding by 15% for 2018-19, Awards 13 Grants to 11 Local Community Nonprofits

Susan G. Komen North Jersey Increases Program Funding by 15% for 2018-2019

and Awards 13 Grants to 11 Local Community Non-Profit Organizations

June 21, 2018  – Susan G. Komen North Jersey announced that it will award a total of 13 grants to 11 local community non-profit organizations in its nine-county service area for 2018-2019, with an increase in total program funding at 15% ...

Maximizing Your Portfolio’s Returns -- Beware the Taxman

The old adage in the investment world is that it is not what you make, but what you keep that counts.  Investors often overlook the ultimate deflator of portfolio returns – the taxman. An astute global asset allocation should be the number one priority for investors.  However, there are preferred ways to distribute this asset allocation over the spectrum of taxable and ...

AtlantiCast

AtlantiCast Episode 17

On this week’s AtlantiCast, it’s National Men’s Health Month, so check out important health tips for you or the men in your life, learn about groundbreaking research into breast cancer treatment that could mean an end to chemotherapy for some patients, meet a local sports hero who’s living his baseball dreams thanks to Goryeb Children’s Hospital and much ...

Video: In The Zone with Christa Anderson

A must watch for anyone considering renovations, here is a recent interview that I conducted -- on my HomeTowne TV Show called “Are You Ready for Life?” -- with Christa Anderson, City of Summit Zoning Officer, to discuss the nuances within the variance process.

I asked Christa to shed some insight into the approval process, explain why it’s necessary, and ...

Hello, Neighbors

Hi, Summit families!

My name is Betsy Stoeber and I’ve been the owner and director at the specialized learning center Brain Balance of Summit since 2011. I first encountered Brain Balance the year before we opened as a parent. My own son participated in our innovative program at the center in Norwalk, CT, to address a number of learning challenges.

Traveling there three times per week ...

My So-Called Graduation

The last of my children graduated from high school.  

 

My son and daughter threw their caps high into the air and cheered their liberation from one symbolic institution before contemplating their matriculation into other, much larger institutions significantly further away.  

 

Or at least far enough away that they won’t be needing rides home from ...