Slavery has never been more prevalent in our country. It starts with feeding the greed at the top with corporate handouts and doling out campaign dollars with both feeling the need to repay each other’s favors.

It is a slavery to a never-ending cycle of corruption.

Next in line is big pharma and huge health insurance and health care companies. Most are slaves to the promise of a quick fix with huge profits rather than a sincere interest in lasting health and well-being of patients. The hard-working, well-meaning health care workers at the bottom are slaves to the organizations who control them.

In most cases minimum wage is a slave wage that doesn’t allow workers to survive without help and no chance to thrive. It is a wage that does much to encourage welfare. On welfare at least more have access to housing, medical and food assistance.

But again, one of those survive but never thrive setups that leads to hopeless frustration and desperation. Of course, there are those who scream, “I have always worked and nobody has ever given me anything.” They can’t see the whole picture and are slaves to their attitudes and bitterness.

How do we end some of this slavery?

A common sense place to start is end the slavery of blind loyalty to political party. Level the playing field for political campaigns. Each politician can be allotted a specific amount of time by media networks paid for by those who want to advertise during the ad or program. Air times could be assigned in a fair manner and advertisers could sign up and be chosen by random drawings. The public would be made aware in advance and messages aired more than one time.

It seems like such an arrangement would not only be fair but cost much less time, stress and money for everyone involved. Candidates would be relieved not only of fundraising time and stress, but also owing favors to big donors. Companies would benefit by having their products showcased before large audiences. “We the people,” would benefit from our leaders and lawmakers actually having time to take care of our national needs rather than, “spending three days a week dialing for dollars.”

A country is only as strong and safe as the people who live and work there. Strengthening our country means everyone has access to affordable clean housing and health care, educational and job training with opportunities for jobs that pay living wages. Fairness in housing, health care, wages and educational opportunities are necessary for lowering crime rates.

If we just want to keep on blaming everyone, there is blame enough to go around for everyone. “We The People” make the world crazy or sane, evil or moral, hate-filled and mean or caring and kind.

To tweak an Abraham Lincoln quote: “There is so much good in the worst of us and so much bad in the best of us ...” that none of us have any right to judge the rest of us, but most of us have been doing it anyway. We have to change that and start working together and put an end to slavery for all of us.

Sharon Thomas