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The bottom line is that we citizens of the United States are the guardians of our democracy.

Americans, for the most part, were disenchanted with the party system in 2016 because it had moved well beyond compromise putting party loyalty before Democracy. Thus, very little was accomplished in congress beyond stonewalling.

Now as we approach the 2020 presidential partisan identity has risen above rationale to dominate any topic you can name, even to Covid-19 and whether you wear a mask or not to prevent its spread. Money in politics assures that “we the people” keep focused on party.

What this shadows is the stake for Democracy versus Authoritarianism.

My neighbors, this stake has been in play since the end of the Civil War, 1865. A number of current books re-attest to the long play to undermine American Democracy: If We Can Keep It by Michael Tomasky; Supreme Inequality by Adam Cohen; Non-Believer Nation by David Niose; and Law Without Future by Jack Jackson. Books on what we have become as a nation include The New Jim Crow, by Michelle Alexander; Toxic Inequality, by Thomas Shapiro; Billionaire Democracy, by George Tyler; The Color of Law, by Richard Rothstein; Evicted, by Mathew Desmond; the Netflix documentary, 13th, directed by Ava DuVernay to name only a few.

What is clear is that money in politics, corporations given citizenship by the Supreme Court, placing party before Democracy is leading America into authoritarian.

Who wants the authority to control America? Corporations who can then avoid being accountable and improve their profits and religious institutions who also covet power to avoid being accountable, setting rules of exclusion and immoral punishment; and to return to ages of religious rule (in America this is Christian Authority).

Voting and demonstrating (resistance) are the two methods the common citizen has to bring change to federal government.

We should always embrace not fear them. Both require that we are guardians of Democratic principles before party, money, religion, and law.

When you vote this November, be prepared to vote for democracy.

Kathryn L. Edwards

Mount Vernon, Ohio

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