It is the evening of November 7, 2016 I have just concluded watching one of the last campaign rallies for both candidates – Donald J. Trump in Manchester, NH and Hillary Rodham Clinton in Philadelphia, PA. You really have to marvel at technology, being at a point in history where you could sit in the comfort of your own home and watch the candidates speak live in the various communities throughout the country. For anyone that was or still is undecided, there really is no excuse for you not hearing both candidate’s message so that you could make an informed decision. The information was and is there for you to absorb.
So as I sit here contemplating the very important choice that I am about to make tomorrow, I can’t help but sense that come November 9, 2016 after all the ballots are counted, I will be waking up to an America that is vastly different from the America of today. It will be the beginning of a long healing process for this country and long overdue!
The question that is begging to be asked, no matter which candidate you support, where do we go from here? The reality of it all is that there will be a winner in this election and there will be a loser. We as American’s need to stay engaged from this point forward. As Americans we have to come together and we have to hold those that we have elected to task. If at any point throughout this election cycle, you called out for change then your job as a voter, as a citizen does not end with your vote. It must continue with your voice!
Change, if truly desired, will not come from those elected, but only from those who elected them to office. History has shown us that left unchecked, elected officials will succumb to special interest groups and the money they wield, therefore it is incumbent upon us to make sure they remain aware of who put them in office. Thankfully, technology provides us with the very tools necessary to accomplish that.
In the past, Americans would rely on fair and impartial news reporting agencies to keep informed on the issues of this country. Today, unfortunately, it has become abundantly clear that News organizations are businesses that are no longer concerned with the truth, but they are concerned with ratings and readership so that they can continue to compete for advertising dollars. We can no longer depend on once reliable journalist to put the interest of the country ahead of their own.
One way that we as citizens can learn more about what issues are being discussed by our elected leaders is to utilize websites such as Congress.gov to track bills that are being debated in both the House and the Senate. You can also look at how your representatives voted on the various issues.
Another site that you could find some valuable information is GovTrack.us where you can set up alerts to track when your elected representatives submit new legislation. The vote database can be used to verify how your representatives voted, and you can set up alerts to inform you at the conclusion of each voting session in Congress. There is a wealth of information on this site, and if you are so inclined and have the time, you can even volunteer to help.
Head on over to WhiteHouse.Gov to learn more about the President’s initiatives. You can also review what Presidential Actions were enacted, such as, Executive Orders, Presidential Memoranda and Proclamations.
The days of Americans not having access to the information that allow us to see what our elected officials are doing are slowly drawing to a close. If we truly wish to advocate for change, we can only accomplish that by performing our due diligence and reaching out to those elected officials to make them aware of how they could better represent us, the voters. Allowing them to act, unchecked, will only further the inaction or special interest that exist today.
Be a voice for change, vote tomorrow and stay informed every day thereafter.