What do regular, average, everyday American citizens want? Think about that for a minute. What do you want on a regular day? No, I am not referring to a million dollars or the fancy car or the gigantic mansion. I am not referring to the famous “World Peace’ wish. I am not referring to a genie in a bottle granting you three wishes. Although those are great material things to have, I am referring to what you want on a normal day. My hope in asking this and as we dig into it, is that you understand 2 things: what in life is important on a daily basis, and what is the expectation of our elected leaders in representing us and what is important to us.
Most people will simply tell you they want to be left alone. When they say this, they are not asking to be hermits. They are simply saying they want to be free to move about on their daily lives and as long as they do not break any laws or bother anyone, they do not want to be bothered by Big Brother Government. Many will tell you they don’t pay attention to politics, do not even know who their elected officials are until they go to the ballot box, have no idea what their local councils and boards do, and in fact many will tell you they have no idea which party is in charge of any office at a given time. While that is likely not a good stance in politics, many really do feel this way.
The mudslinging, bickering, pointing fingers, blaming, political cartoons and memes, party-line voting, lobbying, special interests and name calling turns regular people away from politics. Local, state, and federal elections have had many heated elections where candidates attack each other personally instead of debating the issues. Average everyday Americans do not care for the added drama. They often do not even bother to vote. In fact, according to ElectProject.org, voter turnout data from 1932-2020 shows just an average of 56% of eligible voters in America voted in presidential elections. The number is even smaller for midterm and local races. This goes to prove that regular folks just don’t pay attention to politics.
With all that in mind, what DO regular, average, everyday American citizens want? The regular folks don’t care about party control or politics. They want to go to work, school, church, family gatherings, bars, club meetings, restaurants, amusement parks, and movie theaters. They want all the things we take for granted in a free and capitalist society. At the end of the day, they want dinner at home with their family. They want to be able to pay fair prices for goods and services like milk and bread, and gas. They want their paychecks to be able to cover their daily necessities like food, clothes and shelter and have some money left over to save for that new car, family vacation, or even retirement. They want their kids to be able to college without having to pay for it the rest of their lives. They want the freedom to decide which doctor or dentist to see, mask or no mask in a pandemic, and healthcare that doesn’t require a 2nd or 3rd mortgage on their home. They want to live securely and freely in their homes without fear of someone breaking in to hurt their family or to steal things they bought after working hard and earning the money to be able to buy them. They want that criminal who stole from them or hurt their friends or family members to actually be held accountable and punished according to the laws on the books. They don’t want to be told who, where, when or how to worship. They ask questions like; can my kid go to a good school near my house? Can I safely go to grocery store after dark? Can I sit at an intersection without seeing a homeless guy on a cell phone and smoking a cigarette while begging for money? In short, they just want to be left alone.
Folks don’t want political bickering. They do not care who said what about whom. They want to have elected officials that believe in the things they believe in and understand the daily struggles they face. They want results. They want their vote to matter. To get there, one of the best ways to solve this problem is having term limits in Congress just like that of the President and Governors. Career politicians do not care about their constituents they represent. They care about that next photo-op or fundraiser that will help them get reelected. Appealing to the average voter is a lost art. It is time we take our country back by electing officials that actually care about their constituents. People who actually want to work to better the lives of the average citizen. People who actually engage and interact with the very people they represent. We need our country back and we need it back now. I implore you to take an honest look at the candidates as you head into the primaries and the general election this year. Almost every candidate has nearly the same talking points. Look past the talking points and the free stuff they offer. What is their background? Do they do things in their personal lives that are similar to what you do? Are they being backed by big money donors that have special interests, or are they endorsed by clubs and groups that you are members of or look up to? Before you select that button, circle that bubble, or punch that tab, take the time to know who is behind that name typed on that ballot.
As Americans, we go through life with enough struggles and drama. The average, every day American citizen is struggling and will continue to do so until they stop and see what politics has done to this country with rampant inflation, unstable economic conditions endless wars, and continued rising violent crime. Only then will they pay attention and start electing good people into office. Politicians being politicians has turned the average, everyday American citizen away from caring about the future of this country. Until we hold them accountable to do the work they were elected to do, they will continue to just keep business as usual and this country will soon cease to exist as we once knew it. They will continue to get rich while “serving” in public office. No one should be able to get rich while earning a salary from taxpayers. They work for us. It is time we remind them WE THE PEOPLE are in charge. It is time for WE THE PEOPLE to take out country back!
Brad Kirby is a retired Sergeant, Instructor and K-9 Handler of 20 years with the Durham County Sheriff’s Office in Durham, North Carolina. He is married to his wife of 17 years and has 2 sons. These beliefs are his own and are in no way related to anyone or organization.