On Wednesday morning, I was astounded to see the following message scrolling across the television screen. "Fifty-two percent of Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction."
What? We just had an election the day before, electing a president, 435 House members and 33 senators. I thought I misread that message, but it reappeared. I took a few hours and broke down the results of the voting.
Gay rights triumphed over fiscal responsibility. Marijuana won out over working on funding Social Security. This is the second straight year that the Social Security Trust Fund has had to sell some of its special issue bonds to make up a shortfall. The re-elected president stated in his first debate that Social Security is fundamentally sound. We spend more than $700 billion on the military and yet we can't protect an ambassador and other Americans in Libya. We spend more than $3.5 trillion on the operations of our government, yet we can't provide sufficient emergency assistance to hurricane victims.
America today represents a giant jigsaw puzzle, with the pieces strewn out all over a table awaiting to be assembled.
We, as voters, have spent more time concerned with gay rights and who was eliminated from "Dancing with the Stars" than with the real issues.
We didn't accumulate a $16 trillion debt or become a dysfunctional nation overnight. It has taken us more than 200 years.
Let's see if we can begin to put the pieces of the puzzle together by 2016.
Lucian M. Dawson
Sun City Hilton Head