Another Sunday morning watching the political shows, and the result a few opinions. And while these are just opinions, we as citizens living on the “front lines” of America need to truly talk about the direction our country is going.

It’s sad that people had to die because of politics. Yes, politics. Let’s be honest, we have a president that loves to voice his opinion, whether it’s politically correct or not. We have issues in this country, and partisan politics in today’s government needs to cease when American lives are harmed.

So, let us talk ever so briefly about immigration and gun-control laws. I agree with the president that our immigration policies have a lot to be desired. We need action beyond building a wall or spouting off about an invasion of our borders. We need a comprehensive plan that will not only work, but withstand any challenge from our legal system. One train of thought:

1. Legislation that brings about more immigration courts.

2. Build Trump’s wall.

3. Legislation that redefines anchor babies and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program into one workable idea, not bickering along party lines and encourages immigrant families to become U.S. citizens.

4. Legislation that brings about a more defined policy toward contraband trafficking and border security.

5. Legislation that brings support to small business, that hires illegal immigrants, to encourage families to become citizens.

Folks, we have issues and a government that would rather play partisan politics than actually get something done. For every American harmed by gun violence, Washington’s response is the same, “they walk the walk.”

While I’m supportive of the Second Amendment, we need what could be called a true response to recent gun violence. The proposed “red flag legislation,” may not be enough. And what’s amazing to me is the idea of partisan policy over the life of even one American.

Yes, even in an election year, we don’t need partisan rhetoric, we need action. Granted the president, like all of us, has the right of freedom of speech, but not to spout hate and rhetoric that doesn’t discourage white supremacy, we need leadership that leads by example of voice and action, not a “Twitter-pulpit.”

Maybe we need as a government to ask the National Rifle Association for help in the development of stronger gun laws. We need to seek help from the medical profession to redefine privacy laws as a means of supporting law enforcement spot any red flag on social media or this country.

What we don’t need is partisan politics as a means of fixing like immigration or gun control. It’s not a Republican, a Democratic, or independent idea, it comes from us, Americans.

And, as I close, I claim to be a Democrat; I’m willing to extend a hand across the political divide with anyone willing truly to debate issues, not rhetoric.

Robb O. Rourke Jr. lives in Houston (Clear Lake).


(15) comments

Emile Pope

Simply won’t happen. Republicans won’t negotiate or compromise because they want immigration and gun control to be wedge issues to try and rally their base. To paraphrase Michael Douglas said in The American President “they’re not interested in solving your problems. They just want to make you afraid of them and tell you whose to blame”...

Carlos Ponce

Replace the word "Republicans" with "Democrats" and your statement will be correct. Democrats don't want to give Trump a "win" this close to a presidential election.

Gary Scoggin

Actually in Emile’s post, the words “Republicans” and “Democrats” can be used interchangeably. Both are guilty of the behaviors Mr. Rourke describes.

Emile Pope

I disagree. The belief that both sides are guilty allows the people responsible to not be held accountable while at the same time sullies the innocent ones. The fact is that the Republicans have always refused to compromise and proudly admit to it. Demanding everything that you want and telling the other side that maybe, just maybe, you'll be willing to discuss what they want at some future date yet to be determined is not compromise...

Carlos Ponce

"Republicans have always refused to compromise..." Democrats have refused to compromise, Emile. Their message is wait until the elections. If the D candidate wins then they'll do something - open borders, tax increases, appeasement payments to North Korea and Iran, etc.

Gary Scoggin

Emile -- I'll offer two examples off the top of my head:

Democrats -- The resistance by Reid and Pelosi to accept even any helpful amendments on Obamacare and pushing it through with little minority party input.

Republicans -- McConnel's refusal to bring Merrick Garland's nomination for SCOTUS up for a vote.

Emile Pope


Democrats -- The resistance by Reid and Pelosi to accept even any helpful amendments on Obamacare and pushing it through with little minority party input." That's totally false. The Democrats kept compromising and compromising until the Republicans decided that they didn't want any bill and insisted that the entire matter be put off until an undecided date of their choosing. Those are facts...

Emile Pope

Bailey Jones

Politics isn't about policy, it's about winning.

The Tea Party came to power after Obama's election on a pledge to never compromise. And anyway, how can you compromise with a bunch of socialists bent on destroying our precious country and derailing our economy (as Democrats are so often described by opinion makers on the right).

The success of the Tea Party taught Democrats the importance of not compromising. And with a semi literate reality TV / tabloid star in the White House, it's all too easy to vilify Republicans as the party of ignorance, prejudice, and mindless nationalism - and how can a good socialist compromise with that?

Compromise isn't going to come on immigration, and it's not going to come on gun control, or abortion, climate control, or any other hot topic. Compromise - if it comes at all - will have to start with lukewarm topics - aid to veterans, infrastructure, trade, etc. And we see compromise and cooperation on these lesser policies all the time.

There's the one area that we should all be able to agree on - getting money out of politics. Why is it OK for the Koch family to spend $1 billion on an election? A few years ago while vacationing in Colorado Springs there was a meeting in town - the Kochs had summoned Republican politicians to set policy for the coming year - Texas was well represented with the governor and both senators. Why is this OK?

And on the left we have George Soros, and Sheldon Adelson, and Tom Steyer, and Bezos, and that's just the ones who donate out in the light, not the dark money sources. This has got to stop.

There's a constitutional amendment floating around Congress, and we all need to get behind it -


1. To advance democratic self-government and political equality, and to protect the integrity of government and the electoral process, Congress and the States may regulate and set reasonable limits on the raising and spending of money by candidates and others to influence elections.

2. Congress and the States shall have power to implement and enforce this article by appropriate legislation, and may distinguish between natural persons and corporations or other artificial entities created by law, including by prohibiting such entities from spending money to influence elections.

3. Nothing in this article shall be construed to grant Congress or the States the power to abridge the freedom of the press.’’

Of course, the fact that this comes from Democrats is the only talking point most Republicans need to oppose it.

Emile Pope

The Democrats have always been willing to compromise. And comparing the huge amounts of money donated to the Republicans by the millionaires and billionaires to the sums given to Democrats by a few individuals is laughable. The false equivalency is unsupported. Not to mention the NRA and Fox which are the propaganda arm of the Republican party. The Republicans won't compromise because their party is based on fear and negotiation eliminates that. That's why they change the parameters every time they seem ready to make a deal...

Bailey Jones

According to opensecrets, conservative outside spending beat liberal spending in 2016 $826M to $631M in 2016, liberals beat conservatives $523M to $515M in 2018. Regardless, it needs to stop.

Gary Miller

Emile? Compromise? Agreement to go part way wrong for going part way right. GOP never any wrong, RNC never any right. Good compromise requires total destruction of RNC. There can be no compromise as long as RNC demands some wrong way for anything right way.

Carlos Ponce

Emile posts, "The Democrats have always been willing to compromise." Very rarely, Emile, whether you look at the last two years, or the last twenty - VERY rare.

Jose' Boix

Doing what is right has no party affiliation, in my opinion. Compartmentalizing defeats unification. Just my thoughts.

Charles Douglas

Robb O. Rourke Jr., Sir you are a breath of fresh air in my opinion, and you are obviously, or could be an awesome leader, and teambuilder! If YOU ever run for something, I'd be proud to vote for you if you carry the kind of attitude, decency, and common sense you have put on display today in your Op-ed!!! God Bless.

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