“The American People” are …who?

English: Abraham Lincoln, the sixteenth Presid...

English: Abraham Lincoln, the sixteenth President of the United States. Latviešu: Abrahams Linkolns, sešpadsmitais ASV prezidents. Српски / Srpski: Абрахам Линколн, шеснаести председник Сједињених Америчких Држава. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

OK. So I am confused. The Constitution of the United States, that sacred document to which we all refer to understand what our country is all about, says that government is to be “of the people.” President Lincoln, in the Gettysburg Address, referred to that constitutional sentiment when he said that government in this nation was to be “of the people, by the people and for the people.”

But who are “the people?” As the Congress leads yet another effort to destroy “Obamacare,”  House Speaker John Boehner gets out and says that “the American people” don’t want this Affordable Care Act. And I would suppose that Rep. Eric Cantor, who has been a leader and a voice in the move to cut domestic spending, would say “the American people” the latest proposed cuts, which would slash $40 billion from food stamps, want the same.

My question is,  who are “the American people?”

Every time I hear any politician say “the American people” I wonder the same thing. “The American people,” if the Congress be believed, don’t care if the government shuts down, because opposing the Affordable Care Act is that much of a cause to fight against. So, the people who would lose their jobs, affecting their ability to survive, are not “the American people?”

Is the Republican Congress that when they say “the American people,” while simultaneously cutting back on programs that help the poor survive, that they are cutting out a huge portion of America’s population? Do they care? The argument is that people being cut need to find jobs, but is the Republican Congress aware that people are working, some two jobs, and still do not make a living wage? Aren’t they “the American people,” too?

In a New York Times article, some members of Congress were said to have supported the measure slashing funding for food stamps because “the food stamp program, which costs $80 billion a year, had grown out of control.” (http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/20/us/politics/house-passes-bill-cutting-40-billion-from-food-stamps.html) Um…isn’t part of the reason for that is because thousands of “the American people” were thrown into economic despair because of the Great Recession, which was caused by the machinations of corporations who became more wealthy on the backs of …”the American people?”

Aren’t people with pre-existing conditions, people who are unemployed, people with children who have serious medical issues and who are under the age of 27 with no insurance …are not they part of the quilt which makes up the body of “the American people?”

Mr. Boehner, and others …can you please explain who “the American people” are? Can we finally deconstruct this phrase so that we, “the American people,” can understand who you’re talking about?

Because it just seems that a huge swath of “the American people” have been left out of the club.

A candid observation …

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Comments

  1. The American people according to John Boehner and friends are just that, John Boehner and friends, rich white congressman. It’s painfully obvious that many of those officials in the high up have no connection to what vast amounts of poor and middle class Americans are going though. And why would they have to. They sit in their big chairs, make their big laws to make themselves richer, and their lives continue to go on just as they are. They don’t have to live and make the difficult choices as majority of the true “American people” have to do.

  2. candidobservation says:

    I absolutely hate it when I hear the Republicans say “the American people.” Their definition of who those people are is so narrow; it leaves so many people out. “The American people” are hurting, and too many politicians really do not care.

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