I recently read that a private food bank in the industrial Ruhr region of Germany has come under fire for their decision to serve German citizens only, going as far as this private charities’ delivery trucks being tagged with ‘Nazis’, and the target of criticism from German Chancellor, Angela Merkel.
USA has as many if not more problems than Germany including but not limited to population living below poverty line, childhood hunger, childhood obesity, and an endless list of how our population – both those here legally and illegally – are suffering.
And so I write not to specifically criticize Germany or throw America under the bus but rather highlight how our politicians seemingly and endlessly build bridges to nowhere. Some have even suggested that “…we have to pass the bill so you can see what’s inside it.”
The bridge to nowhere first became a hot US topic of discussion during the 2008 US national election pitting Barack Obama against John McCain. Thankfully the Bridge to Nowhere in Alaska supported by then Alaska governor Sarah Palin who was also Mr. McCain’s running mate was not approved by US Congress who were unable to justify the $398 million price tag to serve the 50 residents of the island on the other side of proposed bridge to nowhere.
I employ the bridge to nowhere analogy in this instance not to suggest that money required does not serve a sufficient number of citizens as was the case with above example but rather as a metaphor for our leaders readiness to start building bridges on one side of the river, pack that side of the bridge with a significant number of people wanting to cross without giving any thought to what might be required on the other side of the bridge.
Based on my reading, at least the Ruhr region of Germany seem to need to address the food needs of their immigrant population. This situation would seem to speak to the idea that Angela Merkel putting out the ‘all-welcome-here’ sign attracting an estimated 1.2 million immigrants during what is termed the ‘immigrant crisis’ of 2015-2016 is an example of Chancellor Merkel building one side of the bridge and underestimating what might be required on the other side of bridge.
Back here in Americashire, we too need to more thoroughly contemplate what is required on both ends of our bridges and proactively attend to each end whilst doing so within our financial means.
Immigration. As I understand the numbers, we have 700,000 DACA eligible humans in this country who should be provided a clear and unambiguous path to citizenship. We have 11 million illegal immigrants over and above DACA eligible humans and I cannot for the life of me understand why we would not want to first put that house in order before opening the floodgates.
Please allow me yet another analogy. If your partner collected vintage typewriters in your home to the point of having no available space for anything else, would you not insist that vintage typewriters already in home be put in some sort of order, some stored elsewhere to make room for life in your home before allowing them to drag home yet another vintage typewriter?
I also read a story about an Arizona school district that took in a large number of Spanish-speaking immigrant students but did not have the resources to accommodate sufficient Spanish-language education or, better yet, English-language education to aid these immigrant children’s’ assimilation into their new country. I do not know whether local, state or federal officials were responsible for this influx of immigrant children into an Arizona school district or, which of these 3 entities neglected to provide sufficient resources to attend to these children’s’ needs once they arrived.
Guns. America does need to stiffen it’s gun regulations and ruthlessly enforce those regulations. Again and according to my reading, there are 300 million guns in America. Banning gun sales might halt new gun circulation but I believe it highly unlikely and I do not support our melting down all 300 million guns already in homes across this vast geographic expanse that is America.
And, even if gun sales were banned against the will of what Gallup has identified as 71% of Americans and it were possible to confiscate all 300 million weapons already in circulation, who amongst us believes that criminals or those with ill intent will not procure guns?
An L.A. Time editorial cited that 85%+ of guns confiscated from criminals in Canada and Mexico were sourced from USA. Canada and Mexico have very strict gun laws that are, based on above cited figures, tightly enforced. If gun sales were banned in America, do we assume, nay, hope that US criminals will not procure weapons from offshore sources such as China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cote d’Ivoire, Hungary, India, North Korea, Pakistan, Romania and many more?
My objective is not to assign blame but rather provide examples of what seems to me to be a bridge to nowhere or potential bridges to nowhere: one side of the bridge is loaded up without absolutely no consideration for what might be required on the other end.
Does the hungry immigrant problem in the Ruhr region of Germany provide a learning opportunity for us here in Americashire?
America’s alleged leaders seem hell bent on building bridges to nowhere and I suspect that much of this decision making is knee-jerk, reactionary, driven by the perceived concept that something, anything must be done now versus taking a breath and offering a productive solution that bridges from problem to solution.