To the editor: I am certain that each of us learned and recited the Pledge of Allegiance while in grade school. Therein we pledge our belief in and support of a “republic ..., one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Beloved artist Norman Rockwell devoted numerous paintings to the Pledge — each highlighting the solemnity of the Pledge, the importance of our larger community and the collective belief in supporting our “one nation.”

Today political discourse too often completely ignores, and sometimes belittles, any recognition of a “collective” community. Such political discourse can also diminish the importance of those who with utmost sincerity recite the Pledge and recognize that differences among us cannot be permitted to override the importance and good of our “one nation.”

Within the next few months our elected representatives will have to wrestle with serious issues related to our nation’s spending. News sources are producing reports and articles about our “debt ceiling.” A failure to reach a consensus supporting a debt ceiling that pays debts our nation has already incurred will rattle financial markets around the world, directly impact the labor market, wreak havoc in the stock market and retirement accounts, raise interest rates, etc.

There are many important issues and expenditures our representatives need to carefully consider and intelligently debate regarding the nation’s debt and spending priorities. The nation’s spending programs, tax policies, and national debt are all interrelated but not necessarily consistent or fair. Any elected representative that merely argues for broad federal spending cuts only in discretionary spending is peddling simplicity rather than engaging in deliberate and considered analysis that would serve a “nation ... indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

It does a disservice to the human intellect to propound simplistic solutions to a complex federal budget created over decades by representatives of both parties.

— Robert Storm, Summit

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