Apathy will be America’s undoing

— Three of four voters neglected to cast ballots in Onondaga County on Election Day 2013.

Voter apathy makes a mockery of the democratic system, as one-fourth of us determine who will lead all of us.

We already know that one percent hold the majority of wealth and influence in this country, many people say, so why bother to vote.

What’s worse is Americans’ silence in response to our nation’s growing police state, both here and abroad. When whistle-blower Edward Snowden revealed the extent of National Security Agency monitoring of citizen emails, the country reacted with little more than a mass shrug of the shoulders. Ever since the hypocritically named “Patriot Act” began whittling away our freedoms a decade ago, most Americans have simply turned the other cheek.

With both major parties beholden to Wall Street, government does the bidding of the bankers. To them, we exist not as citizens with rights but as marks to be fleeced. Taxes continue to rise along with interest rates for consumer credit.

Green Party glimmer

New research from inequality experts Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez points out that 99-percenters have seen their incomes lowered and their living standards depressed. Ordinary people aren’t getting a slice of the pie. They’re barely getting a sliver.

Local Green Party campaigns such as those mounted last year by congressional candidate Ursula Rozum and this year by Syracuse mayoral candidate Kevin Bott offer a glimmer of hope for the future, even though they finished last.

On a national level, Democrats and Republicans have cemented unholy alliances with Wall Street, leaving average Joes no choice but to look elsewhere for answers. If the United States is ever to escape its present sad state, third parties must rise up and awaken the sleeping giant, today’s apathetic American.

The Empire strikes!

The Empire Sub Shop, an offshoot of world-famous Oswego Sub Shop, opened in Liverpool Thursday, Nov. 7. On Friday evening, I enjoyed a half turkey sub with “the works,” a cup of chili and an order of fries, all for $11.49. Co-owner Tim Graber said he and his partners, Bill Greene Jr. and Paul Atkins, plan to celebrate a grand opening in about a month.

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