No to "Throwing the Bums Out"

07.06.10 | Dr. Stephen Coleman | Comments[0]

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There is an old saying from William Shakespeare’s Hamlet that something is rotten in the State of Denmark. Well, if Shakespeare were alive today he could say that something is rotten in Albany and Harrisburg. Indeed, things are real bad politically in both the Empire and Keystone States. You know it. I know it. And so does the rest of the country.

Yes, many lawmakers are not doing their jobs and should rightfully be bounced from office by the voters. That said, I disagree with those who say that the solution to our political woes is to “throw the bums out.” In other words, no incumbent who is running for re-election should be returned to office. I think this ‘throw the bums out” mentality is simplistic and unfair.

Many elected officials in Albany and Harrisburg are doing a poor job and deserve to be voted out of office. But other elected officials are hard working and honest men and women who want to make their constituents proud. To tarnish these individuals by categorizing them as bums — simply because they are incumbents — is an outrage.

My view is this: Every voter should carefully evaluate all candidates and vote for the best man or woman — whether the candidate is an incumbent or not. By the way, most Americans most of the time do not vote. Perhaps at the end of the day we get what we deserve.

cc-wetm - tv- Dr. Coleman also airs commentaries and a public affairs program on WETM 18 Elmira. For more information on these programs, go to


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