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Photo Credit: Leah Millis/Reuters

Our elected officials act like celebrities rather than as our voice. (Op-Ed)

While we are all focused on the presidential election, we turn a blind eye to our own elected local and state officials. You can debate the upcoming 2024 election until you’re blue in the face, but Congress controls the legislation being written. Senators and representatives, who are voted in by the people, for the people, have forgotten who granted them their prestigious position. If you think any of them are genuinely concerned about your state or your family, you’re sorely mistaken. Congress has turned into a shitshow, with everyone just begging and pleading for their time in the limelight for some pathetic, hateful, bigoted law they want to pass. We have the power to vote them out, and we should hold them accountable; they are not thinking of us, only of themselves.

We have some of the most self-centered egomaniacs in Congress. They dress up in their egregiously expensive corporate suits and pencil skirts to argue with one another, boast hateful rhetoric, and worry about funding for their next campaign. The power has gone to their heads – they are not experts on the law, and they are not one of us. They have no clue what it is like to financially struggle, and if they struggled in their youth, they certainly aren’t anymore with their cushy salary. Our tax dollars are paying their salaries, and for what? The federal minimum wage is two McDonald’s hashbrowns an hour, but they could not care less.

They pose for their pictures with perfect, white smiles and crow’s feet, and wave to the camera, meanwhile calls and emails from their constituents pile up unopened and unread. We, the people, only matter to them when it is convenient. They sit in the chamber and argue, rant, and bicker for hours on end while we, the people, barely scrape by. The political power comes second to the social power, as their egos only grow with each reelection. They think they are too good for us, no, better than us, so they don’t have to listen to us.

I’m sorry, but is anyone truly happy? Recent college graduates: can you find a job? Current workforce members: are you paid a living wage? Retired elders: are you able to comfortably rely on your savings and Social Security? New families: can you afford the cost of birth and infant care? Single parents: how much have you sacrificed for your child?

The members of Congress fashion themselves as celebrities, and it is time that we vote them out and rip their status away from them. Maybe then they will finally understand what it is like to be disadvantaged.

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