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Felon Flaherty & His Friends This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   In complex society, government always has been and always will be a foundation for success. No matter who runs it, the government still helps to control the citizens and provide an organized system of power. This distribution of power may or may not be fair in regards to equality and human rights, but at least it is a fixed cornerstone of life. A government is respected and counted on by the good citizens of any country. When there is a breakdown in this system, respect is lost and the citizens feel betrayed and dissatisfied, as they should.

A recent example of this breakdown in command is when Massachusetts House Speaker Charles F. Flaherty was accused and later admitted to charges of tax evasion and income tax fraud. Flaherty is no longer a member of the House of Representatives. The irony was that all of Flaherty's Democratic pals held a fund-raiser for this confessed criminal. Seats for this prestigious ceremony ranged from $100 to $500. The benefits found their way directly into Flaherty's pockets to cover his $50,000 fine. Some of these friends of Flaherty included Senators Ted Kennedy and John Kerry. Kerry is running for re-election to the U.S. Senate in the upcoming election against Governor Weld. Other sponsors included Senate President Tom Birmingham and even Flaherty's successor as Speaker, Tom Finneran.

These facts make you think. What kind of government is running our country? Whatever happened to morality, doing what is right and leading by example? Who are these criminals, posing as politicians to conceal their crimes?

To answer, the United States government, especially the House of Representatives and Senate, is filled with corruption and criminal activity. The majority of today's politicians are immoral and self-centered individuals who will sacrifice their values in order to make a buck. Felonious activity is openly accepted and even rewarded, in, of all places, the government which is supposed to be abolishing such activities, not endorsing them. Instead of serving a lengthy prison sentence or paying a harsh fine, Flaherty's crimes won't cost him a penny. He will never see the inside of a jail cell or be forced to work or sacrifice to pay the fine.

If this example is being presented by the government, who do they expect to keep the peace and enforce the laws against such criminal activities? All of the politicians are at fault here, whether they are personally linked to the crime or just allowed this fund-raiser to occur. They are cowards who are afraid to show character by stepping forward, being honest and standing up for what is right, morally and legally. These actions should not be tolerated.

This fund-raiser and other activities like it mock and make a joke out of the United States government. This hypocritical, oxymoron-type behavior by the government should not be taken lightly or swept under the rug. After all, who can the government control or govern if they cannot take care of themselves? ?


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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