Issues & Political Concerns
Time for Change
I believe that the government at any level should provide services to the people it represents. I believe that these services should be funded by the people that can afford to pay into the system. Most people rail against taxes, but I consider them an investment into a functioning society. Wealthy people with the most money have accumulated that wealth thanks to having an educated populace that is able to perform any type of work. The wealthy made their money because we built roads to transport products and people to where they were needed. The wealthy have been protected from tragedy through public services like ambulances, fire departments, and police officers, all working hard to serve the public. Most importantly, the wealthy have all their needs met, and can afford to invest in the society that allows them to be wealthy.
What goes on between a patient and their doctor should not be interfered with by the government. I understand that many people have been convinced that an unborn fetus is a fully realized human being. Even if I agreed with that, the government shouldn't be forcing anyone to carry a pregnancy to term. There are life-threatening risks in even planned pregnancy, to both child and parent. I can't be forced to drive my truck if I don't want to, because of the danger to myself and others. That's nothing compared to the danger of bearing a child. I'll be an advocate for abortion rights, birth control access, and keeping the government out of your bedroom.
I'm for raising taxes on the wealthy. I think if you have all your basic needs met, you should be helping your neighbors that don't. We have people in this country making more in one year than they can spend in a lifetime, while others can't afford rent working 60 hours a week. It's time to return to pre-Reagan tax levels and make sure the wealthy invest back into the society that lets them live in luxury.
Our environment is complex and fragile. We cannot continue to treat it as though there are unlimited resources to extract. We need to invest in renewable energy sources for everyone, and expand safe, state of the science nuclear energy to meet our needs. I'll push for funding promising scientific advances like Nuclear Fusion technology, and Oxygen Ion Battery Grids, and sponsor legislation to send corporate executives to prison for their company's actions polluting our environment.
Legalization of cannabis
I won't even benefit from this, since I'll still have to pass a drug screen to operate a commercial vehicle. That doesn't stop me from seeing that this is a good idea. I watched my father-in-law waste away from Parkinson's Disease and cannabis was the only thing that gave him an appetite. It gave my wife the better part of a year with her father, but he shouldn't have had to commit a crime in order to benefit. Looking at the data, cannabis is far less harmful than alcohol, and the illegal status has been primarily enforced on marginalized people as an excuse for over-policing. I'll work to remove cannabis from the Narcotics Schedule and allow states to regulate cannabis.
I used to be a full time substitute teacher at Laurens District 55 High School. I had it pretty easy, not having to make lesson plans each day, or grade students’ work, or be responsible for each class excelling. However, I got to see each day how this would take a toll on teachers. I’m not sure where this idea that teachers have it too good ever came from, but it’s a low paying career with a huge amount of expectations. Not only are they responsible for the wellbeing of the children in their care, but they also have to perform in front of them each day, and that performance has to be relevant to the coursework. We ought to treat the people that have decided to put up with this burden with more compassion. We can do this in a couple ways: reducing class size, increasing pay, and not distracting them from their jobs with silly complaints. I'll advocate for earmarks to help South Carolina pay its public school employees enough to attract the best and brightest in the South.
Medicare for All
This is a no brainer, folks. Dealing with private insurance companies is a nightmare. Any time you need more than a basic checkup, you have to call over and over to finally speak to someone, only to do it all over again when the claim is denied. Let's make everyone's life better by funding healthcare for all citizens. We can make the system work for patients instead of making insurance executives richer.
Better Roads and Bridges
Our roads in South Carolina are terrible. We ought to be ashamed about that, but not simply because they are bad. We ought to be ashamed that the people who can afford to fix them, won’t pitch in to do so. The burden of fixing roads is funded by gas taxes, which affect poor people the most. Everyone that has to pay for gas to get back and forth to work is paying a higher percentage of their income than the folks who have the opportunity to work from home. One might say, “If I’m not using the roads, why should I have to pay for them directly?” That’s silly; everyone uses the roads, even if they pay other people to bring stuff to them. It’s everyone’s responsibility to contribute to rebuilding our roads and I want to continue to fund improvements that we're seeing now.