The United States is preparing to war with Syria. Hoping to prevent the impending war many anti-war activists have been urging people to contact their “representatives.” Contacting “representatives” seems to be the go-to solution whenever one becomes unhappy with political matters. This is especially funny because it’s also the most meaningless act one can make, which leads me to a theory. I’m beginning to believe that having the ability to call, write, and e-mail government officials is a sinister plot.
When you think about it, being able to contact government officials gives people an out. Instead of rolling up their sleeves and taking direct action people can be satisfied that they “did something” by making a phone call, typing a letter, or sending an e-mail. They contact their “representatives.” They let him or her know, in no uncertain language, their feelings on the matter. After that their “representative” becomes the responsible party.
As I explained yesterday, political participation is nothing more than acting by proxy. You elect an individual to do the work you want done. If he or she does as you want you give them a gold star, if he or she doesn’t do what you want you give them a demerit. In the latter case you can absolve yourself of any responsibility because it was your proxy who failed. You elected him or her based on promises that weren’t fulfilled. Contacting “representatives” is little different. If they fail to do as you want you can blame them for the consequences.