Congressman Don Young has a point, and it is applicable beyond the House Natural Resources Committee.
Much is being made lately of minorities and the injustices they suffer in the United States.
It’s not that such injustices haven’t been a concern for decades — perhaps centuries — but the death of a black man in the custody of the Minneapolis Police Department weeks ago has elevated the topic to intense public scrutiny.
From the incident, protests arose. Not only black people, but others who believe they are treated less just than others took to the streets, some peacefully and others violently. To be successful, the protesters will have to join the police and others against the violence, which is causing the death and injury of Americans from several races.
It is hoped that they do. Because injustice isn’t only with the black people, but other minorities experience it, as well.
This situation calls for leadership that displays a better example.
Both in the U.S. House and the Senate, there is the majority party and the minority. It’s been that way since the beginning of Congress; one group or another holds the power, while the other struggles to be given the respect their elected office should elicit, not only from their constituents, but other members of Congress.
Congressman Young says that House Democrats on the Natural Resources Committee are holding partisan forums and roundtables without any Republican participation.
The Republicans aren’t given the opportunity to participate in planning or executing the meetings, Young says. They aren’t allowed to offer witnesses.
And, he says, these meetings are being portrayed as official committee business.
It is reckless for the House majority to completely disregard the minority members. They rose to their positions because they theoretically have something to offer this country.
It doesn’t matter which party is the majority now or which is the minority. Throughout the decades, it changes. It will change again. And both major parties wield power over the other when given the opportunity.
The same is true when it comes to race relations. It is reckless, to say the least, to ignore minority citizens. They are Americans as much as anyone else, and they should be treated and afforded the same opportunities and respect as the majority. If they break the law, then they should be punished equally to anyone in the majority for the same crime. If they desire to lead, then they should have the opportunity to compete and to succeed.
Both in the communities and in Congress, it’s appropriate to put forth and implement one’s ideas, but it isn’t OK to completely disregard the voice and the suggestions of the minority. Their input is invaluable, and it shouldn’t be degraded by being ignored.
The minority has something to offer, too. The House should respect that and display an example of how majorities and minorities can cooperate for the betterment of the nation. It’s what the nation needs to stop the violence and for its citizens to coexist peacefully and prosperously, as the sober-minded and wise desire.