EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

December 15, 2013

Your view: Letters to the editor

Only the best representatives will do

To the editor:

On occasion I have run across some issue that bothered me enough to take some action. We have all found ourselves in that position from time to time.

When the issue originates with our government, you might expect that your representatives would be responsive to your concerns. Realistically, you do not expect them to always agree with you, but they should at least attempt to understand your concerns.

If they agree with you, you should expect some positive action on their part. After all, they supposedly work for us. But that frequently isn’t the case.

I do not know if you ever wrote or called your representative or senator, but I have. If you write, you usually receive an automated response. If you get a written response, it usually is many days after the issue’s relevance has passed. Usually their response has nothing to do with your stated concerns and is just political gibberish or plain malarkey. When you call, it is basically the same thing. Unless you are a big donor, you have only a very modest say on how you are being governed. In the case of the well-entrenched incumbent, your impact is even less.

What recourse do you have when your representatives are corrupt or not fiscally responsible or endorse unfair policies? If you are dissatisfied with your incumbents, it is difficult to unseat them since they have access to so much accumulated power.

I, for one, would like our representatives to be more responsive to us. As a citizen, I expect my representatives to care about their constituents first. I expect them to be honest, law-abiding, principled, ethical, hard-working and virtuous. Frequently, newly elected representatives are almost that. Nevertheless, power and celebrity often bring out the negative traits in us all to some extent.

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