OK, I wrote a column about it after all.
Various folks on Fox News chortle about how the government shutdown isn’t affecting many people: 800,000 people are currently on furlough without pay, including park rangers, people who work at welcome centers to national parks, refuge managers, etc. Others are working without pay: law enforcement officers on wildlife refuges, wildlife refuge personnel who have to be immediately available for on-going crises. My husband is one of those people on unpaid furlough. He’s a planner for wildlife refuges in Louisiana. The sequester and ongoing budget battle have already seriously impacted the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, with the service not hiring people to fill vacated positions and planning to close positions currently filled. We have two kids still in college, but we are not the most vulnerable of the folks currently sitting at home hoping that their pay will resume soon. These 800,000 people –people who perform useful and valuable work for the country– also have families that are immediately impacted by the government shutdown. Their groceries and house payments depend on every paycheck. Other people depend upon federal agencies for support. So it’s with great dismay and anger that I hear Sean Hannity say he is not impacted by the government shutdown and Fox News pundits and chatterers snicker about “museums closing” and “the sky not falling.”
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