People, Principle, and Character before Party? Not This Candidate.

partisan, politics

Charles Miller, Contributor

“I certainly have no reason to disbelieve any of [Moore’s accusers]….I believe in the Republican Party, what we stand for, and most important, we need to have a Republican in the United States Senate So that’s what I plan to do, vote for Republican nominee Roy Moore.” – Gov. Kay Ivey (R)

Are the voters of Alabama really willing to put party ahead of principle?  Should Republicans ignore the character and acts of a man who has been twice removed from office for violating his oath?  That is what too many Alabama leaders are really saying.  That’s what’s wrong with politics in Alabama and why I am running as an independent for Senate District 9.

While too many of the GOPs leaders are saying that the party label is more important than character or ability to carry out the obligations of office, many voters think otherwise. I have listened to principled Republicans that are going to vote for Doug Jones in the upcoming special election and some lifelong Republicans who are leaving the GOP altogether. They tell me that they think character is important.  Another Republican, a veteran and principled man, told me that he won’t be voting a straight Republican ticket next year, and maybe never in the future.

Of course there are partisan Democrats too but there are a growing number who are independently minded.  That’s the kind of thinking we need in the political process. Rational reasonable thought beyond a party button or a bumper sticker.

When you put party ahead of every other consideration then the party will back candidates that will freely violate their oath of office, trample the rights of others, and violate the Constitution.  If that is what party unity is, count me out. We need officials who will make rational policy decisions, putting people and principle ahead of party.  That takes working across the aisle to produce legislation to make a positive difference.

I’m not saying I am the perfect candidate but I will say that I am absolutely committed to putting the people of Alabama and American principles ahead of selfish interest or a party.  My pledge is to work to represent the people of my district and state, not to support a party above all else.

In 2018 the people of Alabama who put principle and people ahead of party will have an opportunity to elect a legislature that can take Alabama from worst to first.  I am counting on them to do just that.

Damned if you don’t

school, closings, weather

Clete Wetli, Contributor

Last night, we got the message that the City of Huntsville cancelled classes due to the potential of severe weather as Hurricane Irma was predicted to bring heavy rain and wind into the Tennessee Valley. The kids were jubilant, the adults not quite so much. Then, on social media there was great bitching and anguish over the decision. Most folks were very upset because they felt that the severe weather threat was overstated and that they were now forced into spending some unplanned time with their kids. They were irate because, in many cases, it would mean having to take a day off work presumably without pay.

The best part was inadvertently listening to WVNN conservative talk show host Dale Jackson picking it as his “Number One Thing You’ll Be talking About Today” and excoriating the school administrators for the decision by calling them cowards. I was scanning stations while I was coming back from the store with bread and milk so that we could make milk sandwiches should Armageddon begin. Mind you, Jackson has no kids, but he’s quick to disparage the school system for their decision to err on the side of abundant caution. He thinks the whole decision was based on their fear of lawsuits from angry parents.

I think too many parents would be angry no matter what decision they made. In this case, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey had already made an emergency declaration before the storm changed intensity and direction. This means that cancelling class would not require a “make-up” day. The school systems made their decision yesterday based on the forecast that included wind advisories and a tropical storm watch for the area. Of course, things changed and the forecast wasn’t entirely accurate.

Cue rage and rending of clothes and gnashing of teeth and cursing in foreign tongues! How dare they!! Yes, Dale Jackson was right, this is the number one thing you should talk about today- not disaster relief, not Equifax’s hack, not tax reform, not 9/11 memorials- yes, we should burn the effigies of school administrators and be sure they hear our feverish outrage!

Alrighty then. Now that your done foaming at the mouth, you may wish to consider that if this is, indeed, your number one issue for today, your life is darn good. I have a feeling that later in the day, that will change after your kids complain about being bored and not being able to go outside because it’s raining. Or, you’ll stay enraged like Dale Jackson, who remains completely unaffected by this issue, and gripe incessantly to ever person who’ll listen because that’s sort of y’alls happy place. Ooh, I bet your pissed I used the colloquial word “y’alls” in a sentence, too…

C’mon, whatever happened to our ability to just roll with things? I mean, they made a decision on the best information they had at the time and, yes, they erred on the side of abundant caution. I may be going out on a limb here, but I prefer that rationale over making decisions out of carelessly embracing risk or being completely unaware of severe weather threats or using a Magic 8 Ball for major decisions.

Yes, you will have to interact with your children if you’re able to pry the cell phones out of their hands. You will feel intense guilt as you binge watch Game of Thrones or whatever other non-productive thing you do on a Monday when you should be working. Some of you will even declare at 2:20 that it’s 5 O’clock somewhere. Eventually, your outrage will subside or it will grow as you begin to seriously contemplate a career change as a right-wing talk radio show host.

So, let’s lighten up on the school system. They’re doing the best they can. Those poor folks are truly damned if they do and damned if they don’t. Remember, they’re dealing with your genius angels every single day. Yeah, your genius angels and those bratty moron kids down the street, yet teachers have to do all of that completely sober. So, you’ll make it through this one unplanned day. Remember this afternoon that it’s probably 5’Oclock somewhere and toast the school for unplanned family time.

I wonder what Dale Jackson’s “Number One Thing” will be when he finally does have kids? Probably, complaining about how that Hawaiian Punch cartoon character on his kids juice boxes turned them into liberal snowflakes. Well, we can only hope.