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Please give a little respect

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I am angry. I am a 12-plus year resident of Oklahoma City, proud to live in Oklahoma and have been a resident and citizen of the United States all of my 53 years or life.

I have watched life at its onset and life at its end. I volunteer of my time and money on a regular basis, not only in the Oklahoma City area, but also throughout the United States, of which I have a great passion for. I feel that by helping others, you truly do help yourself. I also feel that you should never help others unless you are taken care of first.

I have worked for the same company in Oklahoma City for more than nine years. Several years ago, I considered myself part of the "middle class" of America, making a good salary with good benefits. My retirement fund was growing, and it looked like the late years of my life would be manageable.

Now it is 2010, and things are not at all like they were a mere three years ago. My salary is down by more than 40 percent, my retirement fund is hardly worth calling retirement, and I truly feel that I have become part of the "lower class" of this country. I know that I am better off than hundreds of thousands of others, but each day I see more and more how hard it is to simply make it.

Why don't we help ourselves and make things right in our country and state first so we are able to help others? How can we just ignore what is going on right here? Look at people and families that have lost their homes, health insurance and jobs due to no fault of their own. This was not supposed to happen in the United States.

We spend so much time and money worrying about what a political candidate is going to say in their televised advertisement or what story will make the most impact and what can be presented in the most sensationalized way that we fail to remember that we as a country and community are aching, hurting and crumbling right before our eyes. Why don't we make our country and community OK first so we are strong enough and emotionally ready to help others?

Whatever happened to doing something because it is the right thing to do? Whatever happened to respect? Whatever happened to human kindness? When was the last time you really respected someone or something else?

"Diana Blocherer
Oklahoma City

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