When the people in our country declared their independence and went about planning our government, there is no doubt in my mind that they chose the wisest and best-educated people to write the laws and establish our government.

There is no doubt that as we choose and elect our senators and representatives in this day and age, that the majority of the people who fill those roles are well-educated, many with numerous degrees in various fields. Yet, in my opinion, the one thing so many of them are lacking is “common sense”.

In the last few days, the Senate and House of Representatives have agreed upon and signed a COVID-19 Stimulus Bill. According to reports, the bill contains 5,593 pages that they did not have time to read all the way through. I was taught years ago that you don’t sign anything without first reading it and understanding it! My parents didn’t sign their name to anything without first reading it …not even my report card and I got all A’s!

As I understand it, the bill will give $600 to each person, however, it also includes sending millions of dollars to foreign countries, includes money to pay for counting fish and gives large sums of money for numerous “pork barrel” things that have nothing to do with the problems of the people caused by the virus! Looks like they settled for a “pig in a poke”!

Giving $600 to each person who has been hurt by the virus is like adding a gallon of water to the Mississippi River to make each barge float better! I live in a rural area in Ohio where you would be lucky to find a place to rent for $600 a month. In some of our big cities, it wouldn’t cover a small room for a week! Try feeding a family with children on $600 even if they eat a lot of macaroni and rice. They definitely won’t be eating steak and not a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables! What if that family includes a baby that requires formula, baby food and diapers?

Six hundred dollars won’t make a dent in the cost of the seed and fertilizer needed by farmers to plant their crops come spring, nor will it pay for a dairy farmer to add a good milk cow to his herd. Do any of these senators and representatives have any idea what a piece of machinery or a tractor costs these days? How many of them have to pay out of their pockets for high priced medication needed to keep them alive? It is my understanding that they have very good health insurance!

Most senators and representatives live in big, fancy houses, some of those who have been in politics for years own several houses and have lots of money, some of which was “earned” by doing “special favors” for “friends”. They have housekeepers, cooks, gardeners, a nanny to care for their children and other help. They think nothing of going out to high-priced restaurants and ordering high-dollar steaks and food. They never think about the work put in by so many people that allows them to enjoy their evening and have that food on their table!

A check for $600 is nice, however, it is not going to solve the people’s problems and it is not really what the people want. They just want to get their lives back, to be able to go back to work, to open up their businesses, to send their children to school, to go to church, to participate in social activities and more. Then they will be able to pay their bills and take care of the problems in their lives.

Our senators, representatives and other elected people in government need to be educated in the reality of what life is really all about for everyone in this country. If they don’t listen and don’t learn, then they need to lose their jobs! They are supposed to be working for the people…all the people!

Barb Lumley wrote this column to be published in The Circleville Herald. The views of this column may not necessarily reflect that of the newspaper.

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