Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Idea

We have friends who regularly deliver for the "Meals on Wheels" program in to Albuquerque's South Valley.  This program delivers food to senior citizens who may or may not pay for the meals.  Many do not because of the poverty they live in.  The descriptions of the living conditions of some of the elderly recipients is horrifying.  If they did not receive these meals they would certainly not survive long.

Governors, Congressmen, Senators, Legislators and all other elected officials should be required to deliver these meals into poverty areas at least three times a year.  It might be the only way they can see for themselves that there is a whole forgotten segment of our population that lives from day to day. (I know Congressman Martin Heinrich has done this.)   And they only live a few miles from where the more fortunate folks live, but invisible xenophobic lines keep them from knowing what life is like on the other side.  I would say there are people who have lived in Albuquerque for decades that have never taken a ride down Isleta or Arenal roads in the south valley.

Meals on Wheels delivers all over the city.  There is poverty in all parts of Albuquerque.  There are needs for good nutrition everywhere.  Our politicos need to see it first hand and I challenge Governor Susanna Martinez to accompany some folks delivering into these areas.


2 comments:

Bubba Muntzer said...

Thank you for that.

Well of course, that vast majority of people don't spend a second of their day thinking about poor people in the South Valley.

Maybe Martin Heinrich does, maybe he doesn't. I haven't seen anything from him so far in his career, based on his actions, to make me think he does, or that he'd ever use his position in the Senate to get people to think about poor people in the South Valley. I hope, but don't really expect, that if he is elected to the Senate he will start demonstrating, by his actions, that he has half the conscience you display in this post.

I hope he won't just go up there and occupy a seat, as his predecessor has done, and just spend his career enjoying the status that comes with the position and the opportunity it affords you to pocket multi millions and retire in comfort, as his predecessor, Jeff Bingaman, has done.

He's been headed that way. Look back through the files. Every time there's been a contentious issue in the news, Martin Heinrich is nowhere to be seen or heard. He has performed in the Bingaman mold every time. Hide in your office until it's all over, then, when it's all over, issue a fine sounding press release stating how you voted based on your fine, principled position. After it's all over. Don't weigh in on the debate while it's underway. Don't try to inspire or mobilize people. Don't expose yourself to anything that might hurt your reelection chances.

I hope he will start using his platform to start doing something to counteract the stranglehold the Right has on debate and public discourse, which is exactly why people don't spend any time thinking about meals on wheels or the South Valley, let alone doing anything about it. That's what you use you blog for oftentimes. I've seen no indication from Martin Heinrich during his tenure as a congressman that he'd use his position as a senator to do anything like that.

Vicki said...

You have an excellent suggestion. I don't know about a requirement but surely any politician who wants to serve the public good ought to be doing this regularly. May I suggest that you write this up as a Letter to the Editor? I think your idea deserves a wider readership.