The Sun Journal editorial printed Oct. 2 included in the headline the words “Shutdown OK.” The editorial stated there has been little impact on most people’s lives.

That may be correct in terms of numbers of people directly affected, but is misleading on the impact on those who are affected.

Approximately 800,000 people are being furloughed from their employment. There is a direct impact on their lives by the lack of income to support their families. That lost income will directly affect the nation’s economy because they will cut back on spending.

All the people on the WIC program will lose their assistance to purchase food. This is the wealthiest nation on the planet but we have a high rate of poverty and hunger. The shutdown will only aggravate those problems.

Republicans complained when White House tours were canceled when sequestration was implemented. I have not heard them complain now that the national parks and monuments in Washington, D.C., have been closed to visitors because of the shutdown. There are families who saved for a vacation to visit those national treasures and now cannot access them.

Republicans have allowed a minority of members associated with the tea party to control their party. Those folks have no interest in governing, nor do they have concerns for what is best for the entire population. Their only concern is a narrow agenda of minimizing government and doing away with a health care law that was passed by Congress, signed into law by the president and reaffirmed by the Supreme Court.

Because it is not something they agree with, they are holding the country hostage.

They complain that the president will not negotiate. They have no business tying the health care law (or anything else) to passage of the spending bill. That would be akin to Democrats linking gun control legislation to passage of the budget.

The country can have an adult conversation on health care. Republicans do not seem to have offered a viable alternative, other than let the marketplace do its thing. That has not been working.

Sen. Ted Cruz claims he speaks for 300 million people. He does not.

It appears Republicans are willing to let the nation’s economy and its citizens suffer for the sake of getting their way.

Stan Tetenman, Poland


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