Several years ago I heard a tumult outside in the street. Curious, I went out on the porch to see what was happening. There were several police cars and an ambulance at an address across the street. Many of my neighbors stood clustered about, waiting and watching and murmuring. Someone told me quietly that a young man whom I didn’t know and who had only recently moved in across the street, had just shot himself – committed suicide. He was twenty-five. Just then a gurney was carried out, heavy with what appeared to be a human body, but shrouded from head to foot. Not wanting to rely purely on gossip, I approached a police officer nearby. Seeking official confirmation, I asked if what I’d heard was true. Instead of simply saying yea or nay, he responded: “It’s a personal matter.”
Actually, it’s not; but I wasn’t going to argue the point with a low-ranking policeman.
As citizens we have the right to know the true state of the union.
From President Washington’s day until now, we, as citizens, have had our right to know violated because we have been denied our right to know the true state of the union.
The U. S. Constitution, the several State Constitutions, as well as the founding documents of local governing bodies all require the chief executive of such to give an address, an annual report back to the people, of the true State of the Union.
In a democracy the people rule (in theory) but they cannot properly rule if fundamental facts are being withheld from them.
The President of the United States delivers the constitutionally mandated State of the Union Address. The Governor of the state delivers the constitutionally mandated State of the State Address. The County Executive delivers the mandated State of the County Address and the Mayor delivers the State of the City Address. But not really. Not at all. These politicians merely use this as an opportunity to stump for their own agendas; and in the process, deny us all our right to know the true State of the Union.
Every few seconds someone commits suicide in this country.
This is a plague.
This is not “a personal matter.”
I’m no longer proud be an American.
If immigrants, both legal and illegal, were aware of the suicide rate in this country would they be so eager to come here? All they see is propaganda. If citizens know so little about the true state of the union, how much could a foreigner possibly know?
Politicians sell themselves first. Sweeping the ugly truth under the rug comes naturally to them. They want the money, power and prestige but not the responsibility. How can the electorate choose rightly, not knowing? That is the purpose of the State of the Union Address.
Just recently divers were dragging the Milwaukee River in search of a young man gone missing after a New Year’s Eve party. They found another body instead. Most suicides go unnoticed unless they make a splash. The media rarely reports “back to the people” and politicians never do. The State of the Union it seems, is a personal matter and none of your business.