You're gonna have to stick with me on this one; it may get a bit cerebral, but if you weren't smart, you wouldn't be reading my blog, so we're all good.
I guess this is coming about a month or two too late, since the title and theme would've been best offered right around November or December (it's a "wish list"), but this didn't really hit me until just now, so this is when you're getting it.
First of all, you've noticed that I've tried (and hopefully have succeeded) in avoiding painting American political parties with a broad brush. I get that painting with a broad brush can be more correct than incorrect, but unless it's necessary, it's never a great idea. To every rule, there are exceptions. There are progressive, reasonably-minded republicans who, if they were from a different locality than progressive New Jersey, might even be democrats. There are also a bunch of "right-thinking" conservatively leaning democrats that are probably republicans in democratic clothing in other states. And sometimes, as we know from experience, legislators and politicians near the "middle" of the spectrum do change their party affiliation.
With all of that in mind, I'm talking to both republicans and democrats, even to libertarians and socialists. I don't really care what party you typically support. I don't care how you typically vote. If you work for a living, or the people you love do, then I'm talking to you.
I'm also not telling you what "party' to support. You've got to look at the candidates in each political battle in which you're eligible to vote and figure out who's going to protect workers' rights better than the other. Whoever that person is, vote for that person based on that issue.
Because I've been doing this for 23 years and frankly, it's intellectually and emotionally exhausting to talk to 5000-6000 people a year that I can't help because the state of the law in New Jersey is not advanced to a point where such people, though their fact pattern, would be able to redress their concerns in the courts. They deserve help they just, based on the current state of the law, can't get it.
That's 5000-6000 people per year. Do the math. We're approaching 100,000 people over my career that I can't help because the law doesn't offer help despite the fact that these people deserve it.
As a consequence of this, I've made out my "wish list" on behalf of New Jersey workers. This isn't really my "wish list;" it's your wish list. You. Republicans, democrats, older people, younger people, black, Hispanic, Asian, South American, Pacific Islander, Artic Circle, gay straight, disabled, well, transgender, all religions, all ages. All of you. The people with college and advanced degrees and the people who barely got through high school. The people making a lot of money and the people making a little money. The people working just for themselves and the people trying to feed spouses, partners and families.
All of you. I know that you have more than one issue upon which you vote. Perhaps you've got a religious affiliation, or a political one. Perhaps you've got some tax policy ideas in your head, or you've got ideas about immigration, foreign policy, etc.
If you're going to call this office and then tell me how upset you are with the state of the law because, as a worker, the law doesn't protect you from whatever it is that prompted you to call, however, you've got to stop voting all those other issues and vote your interests in a better, safer, more secure and productive workplace.
You get it? No more complaints until you change the political landscape of New Jersey and, frankly, the United States.
Here's your wish list.