Friday, July 9, 2010

Voters should make choices based on policy not on personalities or party

There is the republican that was once accused of stealing cars, not once, but twice. There is the democrat that is a felon that just got out of jail and wants to run for congress. There is a republican commissioner that is a felon and still holding office. There is a democrat that had sex with a campaigner worker – who wasn’t his wife.

When they say things, they will retract or apologize; depending on the response. They will change positions; sometimes it is for the better, sometimes for the worse. Sometimes they outright lie and when caught will say they forgot.

There are parties that think they have all the answers and trip over themselves to point out what is wrong with the other side while their side does the same thing. Parties take positions on the issues for election, but many members of the party don’t adhere to them (of course, not that they really should, but it seems odd that many times we vote for parties when the one we are voting for doesn’t support the positions).

Most of the time there are some just plain good people doing a great job for the community. But, we don’t hear about them because they don’t make news. They labor away in a faint obscurity working to improve the conditions of the people, places and environment in the community.

Do any of them sound familiar? They should because they are the stories we read every day about politicians and political parties from the pages of the news, real people. All of them have supporters and detractors, people that are out after them and others that think they walk on water and really didn’t do those things; good or bad things.

That is why no one should support parties or personalities. When we get mesmerized by a personality, it becomes too easy to take advantage of the believers. Or when we think a party has the answer, the answer is usually much too structured and doesn’t fit into everyday life in every community.

We should all support policy. Personalities and parties create policy to help solve problems that individuals and communities have. If we examine the policy based on the problem and the outcome, then we have a better chance of making the right decision. If we support personalities we run the risk of watching them fail. If we support parties outcomes could be so highly structured that they are inflexible to the wide variety of communities it is suppose to help.

During the day to day activity of government and during this next election cycle, examine the policies that are being discussed. Make a decision based on how those policies will solve a problem.

We will all make better decision.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

No second chances for Lewand

Detroit Lions president Tom Lewand was arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) after attending a charity golf outing. In America today there is just no reason that should have happen, especially to someone with the resources that Lewand has at his disposal.

Lewand has issued a statement where he apologies for his action and accepts full responsibility. Team owner, William Clay Ford, has issued a statement that supports Lewand as an important asset to the team. The Lions head coach says that one of the reasons he came to the team was because of the outstanding job that Lewand is doing for the Lion’s organizations. Unless there are things publicly stated that didn’t get press coverage, the statements made where of full open support with no conditions attached. As of Monday, June 28, 2010 there is no mention of the incident on the team web site.

There are much less people driving while drunk in America then there was a generation ago. All of this thanks to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the organization that works hard to change the laws and behavior of Americans. (It should be disclosed here that drunk drivers have taken two members of my extended family. I have no sympathy for those that drive while impaired.) Culturally, it has changed from being something we laugh at to something that we view with disgrace.

But, we have a ways to go yet.

One thing that we can do to continue the fight, especially with high profile cases like Lewand’s is to openly illustrate the negative outcome of his actions. It is certain that there will be conversations between the owners and Lewand on this situation. Hopefully, as a result of those conversations, disciplinary action will be taken. This action should be made public. This will make it clear that driving while drunk or any other similar action does come with a down side.

Additionally, any support from family, friends and professional colleagues should come with conditions. It is good that those around Lewand came to his support. He will need it to take responsibility for his actions, not just publicly as he has, but also personally to learn how to prevent himself from making the bad decision to drive in the condition he was in. But, that support should come with conditions. Also, no support like he is currently receiving should ever come with a second chance. The support should come from this one chance and there should be no other chance. Period.