Shared Sacrifice

Shared Sacrifice

Kelly Salasin, Vermont, July 2011

As I listen to the Senator from Vermont address the budget issue with calls for “shared sacrifice,” I wonder how such a compassionate nation can be so careless with those we claim to care about the most.

It’s amazing to me just how many of my liberal and conservative Facebook friends will join together in a frenzy around the heartbreak of a child’s life taken–without recognizing that what happens in DC every day–affects many, many more children, just as heartbreakingly.

Where is our compassion and outrage as child abuse rises?

  • US: Economic stress drives rise in child abuse and domestic violence

  • Social service agencies across the US are seeing growing numbers of cases of domestic violence and child abuse.

  • Shaken baby cases on the increase

  • Specialists link rise to economic stress

  • Rise in Child Abuse Called National ‘Epidemic’

How is it that we continue to prioritize profit and gain while claiming to care so much about the American family?

  • In 2009, Exxon Mobil made $19 billion in profits, paid no federal income taxes and received a $156 million rebate from the IRS.
  • Chevron received a $19 million refund from the IRS last year, even though it made $10 billion in profits in 2009.
  • Corporate tax revenue in 2010 was 27% smaller than 2000, even though corporate profits are up 60% over the last decade.
  • General Electric made $26 billion in profits in the US over the past 5 years and, thanks to loopholes, paid no taxes.
  • In 2005, 1 out of 4 large corporations paid no income taxes even though they collected $1.1 trillion in revenue over that year.

How do we allow our  budget to be balanced “on the backs of the weak and the vulnerable“–while decrying the violence in Norway?

  •  “One of worst proposals on how to reduce red ink came from a group of senators calling themselves the Gang of Six. They want massive cuts in Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and virtually every program important to working families, the sick, the elderly, the children and the poor.”

Though he is a Senator from Vermont, my Facebook friend from New Jersey captured Senator Sander’s call for “shared sacrifice” best:

“Bernie, at least, still has–us–as his focus.

Thanks to Vermont for speaking for all of us regular people!”

May all of us “regular people” join our voices with Bernie’s and be heard!


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