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SPOTLIGHT
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Candidate forum

Published on -8/27/2012, 3:03 PM

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A disengaged majority allows a small minority to determine and control the lives of all its citizens.  The silent majority gives the power to lead to the few.  George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Ben Franklin warned future generations of exactly this possible event. If you know your American history, you know of this truth. James Madison wrote, "A well instructed people alone can be  permanently a free people."

It all begins at the local and state levels. The politicians we, the people, elect at the local and state levels become the future politicians at the federal level. It should be obvious that we, the people, need to educate ourselves by engaging in the political process all along every level of elections.  

Some of our national politicians have said for years that people all over the world want to live in freedom.  We have even helped countries gain their freedom.  People want the freedom to elect their leaders, their representatives who gain their power to lead from the people. We have numerous examples of people around the world who exercise their freedom to vote even when they risk their life to do so.  But many Americans who do not vote  have taken for granted that those who do will elect politicians who will govern with honesty, integrity and faithfulness to what our Founding Fathers created, the greatest Constitution in history. How is that working out?  America's debt today of $16 trillion is more than the debt of all the countries in Europe.  

A poll was taken about 10 years ago that asked educated Americans, "Will America survive the 21st century?" Approximately 75 percent said America will not survive through the 21st century. And, if that becomes true, that demise could come anytime between now and 2099. Have we as a nation allowed ourselves to become so uninformed and so disinterested? Do we take our freedoms for granted? Fewer than 1 percent are in our  military, and  they are engaged.  Many Americans say to themselves, "I have mine. Why should I worry about what  is going on in our country?" That can be taken away in an instant as history repeats itself over and over again.

At 6 p.m. Sept. 11 at Thirsty's, 2704 Vine, there will be an opportunity for you to become engaged as there will be a general election candidate forum.  It will give you the opportunity to listen and ask questions of both political parties, the Democratic and Republican candidates, competing to win a seat to represent you.  

The following candidates will compete for office:

* Allen Schmidt, D, v. Ralph Ostmeyer, R, state Senate District 40

* Eber Phelps, D,  v. Sue Boldra, R, state House District 111

* Philip Martin, D, v. Travis Couture-Lovelady, R, state House District 110

* Dean Haselhorst, D, v. Ron Adams, R, Ellis County Commission  District 3

* Dennis Pfannenstiel, D, v. Barbara Wasinger, R, Ellis County Commission District 2

* Donna Masku, D, v. Robert "Butch" Schlyer, R, Ellis County Clerk

A panel will ask questions of the candidates.  Then the public will have its opportunity to ask questions.  The event is free. The public is encouraged to attend.                

Roger Ewing, event host, Hays

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