Letter: Bathtub destiny – Tulsa World

How do youth react to reputations of their neighborhoods? How do lack of family support, lack of money and peer pressure lead to teen crime? And how can people help?

Our elected leaders underfund many our public institutions, including public education, which used to be a hallmark of our great nation.

Our leaders are intent on criticizing public education, vilifying it, underfunding it and then replacing it with charter schools or vouchers for private schools.

For most of our history, Americans accepted the notion that we’re all in this together. One demonstration of that commitment was a collective obligation to fund government so it could provide the quality services we have the right to expect.

Now, with the fervor of religious orthodoxy, our Republican leaders have become obsessed with how to make one tax cut after the next, no matter the wisdom, no matter the effect.

We should be disheartened that our obsession with cutting taxes, instead of making the tax system more fair, has the effect of underfunding public institutions, making sure they underperform and underserve. Then, that makes us more frustrated.

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When folks complain about how government cannot perform even basic services, it is because Grover Norquist, founder of Americans for Tax Reform, gave our current leaders the roadmap.

He said, “I don’t want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub.” This is what heading to the bathtub looks like.

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