On December 22, Mr. Trump began a partial government shutdown. According to various news outlets, Mr. Trump did so because of the border security issue that he and Congress cannot agree on.
This shutdown will affect all of the United States of America. Keeping that in mind, I have taken the time to ask teachers what their thoughts on this shutdown are.
One of the most debated questions asked was “Why?”
Mr. Tucker simply says, “Ego!” To further explain, he says, “Both Trump and Pelosi have pushed themselves into corners and are unwilling to look politically weak by giving in. In fact, there was a Republican deal that Trump was going to accept prior to Christmas until he saw all the negative press he was getting on Fox News, and then he issued his $5.7 billion ultimatum. The real tragedy is the 800,000 federal employees whose lives are being negatively impacted by their childish battle.”
Mrs. Schlafer thinks, “The government has lost the ability to compromise and work for the good of the country. Each political party is trying to show their strength.”
“From what little I know, I believe that President Trump has refused to sign the bill because it didn't include funding for a border wall,” Ms. McCroskey begins. “He hasn't budged on that, so the bill hasn't passed and the funding to all these agencies has lapsed.”
Another topic that has been brought up on many news outlets is the government personnel going without pay. Some have decided to continue working, with hopes of back pay, while others aren’t working at all. The teachers’ opinions on the matter are mixed.
Ms. McCroskey says, “It doesn't matter who you are-- if you are expected to work and you aren't paid for it, it's wrong. It makes me bitter just thinking about it. I would 100% never work without pay.”
Mr. Tucker, on the other hand, thinks, “It is unfortunate that they are being caught up in a political battle that could be easily resolved. I know as a teacher I would work without pay so I assume I would as a federal employee if my job was essential.”
“I am concerned that they may not do their best quality of work,” Mrs. Schlafer begins. “Getting paid validates that the person is doing something of importance. Without that validation, why give your best performance? I don't think the president or Congress should be paid until the shutdown is over.”
When asked how this shutdown has affected them directly, all of those involved in the poll were unaware how it affected them.
However Mr. Tucker says, “As it drags on, there is certainly the potential especially as it affects economic growth. That being said, it could affect the students who may need federal student loans and families that depend on federal assistance in the form of welfare benefits.”
In order to further the discussion, I asked how the shutdown affected the community.
Mr. Tucker responds, “Not to my knowledge, but that is because of my ignorance when it comes to how much this community depends on the departments or offices of the federal government.”
Ms. McCroskey adds, “It depends how many people in this community are depending on agencies like the IRS, NIH, etc.”
To end the shutdown discussion, I asked whether or not the teachers agreed with it. All of the teachers who participated in this poll said that they didn’t agree with this shutdown.
Mrs. Schlafer simply says, “Innocent people are carrying the brunt of the burden.”
“Sometimes my niece gets upset when her brother won't give her a toy,” Ms. McCroskey explains. “She throws a tantrum and cries and jumps around, but in the end, it's a worthless baby argument. America is above worthless baby arguments. There needs to be a compromise. We need to pay our workers.”
“American politics is based on compromise between the two parties,” Mr. Tucker begins. “Look at our history, and the only way things get accomplished is if both sides are willing to come together and work out a deal. As I mentioned, it is about egos not security. The majority of illegal immigrants are people who stay after their visas expire; few come across the border illegally. Most of the drugs in America come through ports and not across the border. There is no evidence that terrorists are entering across the border either. All this data comes from federal departments like Homeland Security and others. Historically there is no wall that stretches for over a thousand miles that is successful. The only walls that work, like the one in Israel, are relatively short, [and] constantly manned and monitored with state of the art electronic surveillance equipment, which is impossible with ‘Trump's wall.’ The money could be much better spent on using modern technology like satellites.”
On December 22, President Trump initiated a partial government shutdown that will affect all of the United States of America. After talking to the New Haven teachers, it is obvious that they are highly disappointed with the government shutdown and hope that federal employees will not be affected much longer.