Hi BW! I grew up in Nampa, and am a big fan of BW, as this paper was often the only voice of reason around. This letter is in response to the following article: "Yes, That's Idaho Treasurer Ron Crane Talking About Potatoes, Pledge of Allegiance at the RNC" [News/Unda' The Rotunda, July 20, 2016].
From the state treasurer of Idaho, Ron Crane: "We are so Republican that when we say the Pledge of Allegiance, it's, 'To the Republicans for which it stands.' Our entire congressional delegation is Republican, all of our statewide constitutional officers are Republican and our Legislature is Republican."
The subtext behind these cloying statements are: Our state brooks no dissent and does not encourage diversity in thought or opinion; woe to those who have questions about the Way Things Are Done.
Despite Crane's pandering to the contrary, Idaho does indeed have diversity, and the lack of representation in her Legislature is but a symptom of the stranglehold on free discourse.
Certainly this rhetoric is less insidious than much that has come out of the RNC, but it is worth remembering that words politicians use have meaning.
Idaho, despite the state Legislature's roster, is a diverse state, with more than 20 percent registered as Hispanic or non-white. Race alone is not a determination of political affiliation, but with blanket political statements Crane adamantly denies the voices of thousands of Idahoans. Particularly with this election's representatives of the Republican Party, any claim of racial inclusion rings hollow.
Treasurer Crane would also do well to recall that one of the greatest progressive politicians in American History, Frank Church, represented Idaho as her senator for a quarter of a century.
As the mass media continues to groom the country for authoritarian-Republicrat rule, let us not forget that there is always another option: Jill Stein of the Green Party. Our voices matter, and together we can reshape our government to work for people and not corporate interests.