The Government Shutdown and Why It Should Matter to You
So, we have a federal shutdown. What’s that got to do with you? A lot, actually. Especially with this one. First thing’s first: who does this affect directly? “Non-essential federal workers” like museum and national park employees go home without pay until the government shutdown ends. People who receive unemployment benefits and tax refunds also experience delays with their checks. Basically a lot of people go home without the money they need to support their families.
But if that doesn’t affect you, here’s why you should give a damn about this particular government shutdown. There’s been a standoff between the Trump administration and the Democrats about border security. Trump is finally trying to get that wall he promised.
During a meeting in the Situation Room on Wednesday, the Democrats offered $1.3 billion for border security as long as it didn’t involve a physical wall. Trump refused to budge. He wants the $5.6 billion for the wall or nothing. A wall can mean drastic changes for the country we live in. Think along the lines of the Berlin wall.
Now, the Republicans are pointing fingers at Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats, for interrupting the Department of Homeland Security during their briefing about the border. Basically, everybody is pointing fingers at everyone else and nothing is getting done. And what’s funny is that depending on what news sources you look into, you’ll get a different story on why the government won’t move forward.
The point is that no one compromises anymore. At some point in the meeting on Wednesday, Democrats offered to reopen government fundings until February 8 so that employees can begin to work again, but they were refused. There will be another meeting on Friday, but even Trump said it could be a while before things open back up again.
So, the reason you should care about this government shutdown is because our government leaders would rather have a standoff to get exactly what they want rather than assist the people they are sworn to assist. Thousands of people are without jobs and money until action is taken and it seems like no one is willing to do much.
You should care because it’s shutdowns like this that polarizes each house more and more, and leaves us with little choice when it comes time to vote. We should be angry at how opposite the houses have become. We shouldn’t have to abandon some of our values when we vote for a leader of our country. And those leaders shouldn’t willingly leave employees without jobs.
Disclaimer: I got my information from The New York Times and Fox News.
Cover image via Vox