As the government shutdown drags into its third week, people who hate the government the most will start to see the effect of services going away.
Food that had been kept safe by the Food and Drug Administration is iffy now. People needing passport applications done for travel that can’t wait are on indefinite hold.
Efforts to keep the air, water and soil safe are on standby with the Environmental Protection Agency sidelined. If there is a disease outbreak there is no Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to respond. And national parks are closed to tourists and vacationers.
What people are finding and what even tea party Republicans need to wake up and see, is the government isn’t that hated “them.” The government is the collective “us.”
The federal, state and local governments do what people in our republic in past and current generations have dictated that governments do to “establish justice, insure domestic tranquility and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity...,” to quote the Constitution.
The government shutdown and the unwillingness of Republican lawmakers to extend the debt ceiling before Oct. 17 put all of that and everything people have depended on government to do at risk. The effects in the Kansas City area are seen at empty parking lots for area stores, shopping centers and movie theaters.
Federal employees, who constitute this area’s largest single work force, have had to cut back as their latest paychecks arrived with only a fraction of what they normally get. If the shutdown drags on, those checks will drop to zero, and then the utility companies, credit card companies, banks and others will feel the efforts.
It is long-past time for Republicans to re-read the Constitution and act accordingly.