As many of you know, I grew up in central New Jersey. What you may not know is in 2002, I moved to Bloomington, a university town in southern Indiana to be closer to my maternal grandparents and to relocate the family Internet business. My grandparents were in declining health and I wanted to be near them in their last years. Also, my family business had grown too big to run out of our home, but it was too expensive to rent a separate space in New Jersey. So my parents and I made the move to Indiana where it is far less expensive to live and run the business.
For years prior to the move, I had visited my grandparents on and off for years. I also kept in frequent contact with them. I loved my grandparents very much, and I still do in my heart. So when the opportunity came to move with my parents to the state where my Mom had grown up, I jumped at it.
As the years have gone by I have noticed a whole lot of polarization even in this state where there is a Republican majority. It is very likely if the minority party were to try to amend a bill; the majority would shut down every attempt. About a month ago the conservative members of legislature ignored teachers and the people who voted for our Superintendent of Education, a Democrat named Glenda Ritz, passed a law that usurps her authority. They felt she was trouble and unwilling to work with others, so a bill was passed and signed into law allowing the State Board of Education to vote whomever they want to be their leader.
The same thing would be repeated when Democrats tried to offer amendments to the very controversial RFRA so gay, lesbian, and transgender rights could be protected. All efforts were shot down. And numerous business voices including Angie’s List, Lilly, Comic Conn, and more strongly urged the governor not to sign the bill, he did so anyway and the uproar over the RFRA increased exponentially.
I express my opinion on issues I feel strong about in letters to my representatives and I feel that some of them do not want to hear them nor do they respect my views. It may be because:
1) I do not have loads of money
2) I am not influential
3) I live in Bloomington, a city seen as liberal when it is more than this one label. It is multicultural, musical, artistic, theatrical, and full of restaurants with world cuisines and on I could go.
I stay here because I am in the community where my grandparents lived for years. I want to be near these memories, as well as my family. As long as these trump what the legislature and the governor do, it will take a lot more than recent events to get me to leave the state. Although I do admit I hope that lots of crow is eaten by those who voted for this and that eventually people like me will be heard on important issues. I could be dreaming but maybe, just maybe, there will be a shift and the legislature and governor will not be so quick to ignore all views but their own.