Pete Riehm
Americans just want truth, fairness, and respect
By Pete Riehm
August 22, 2022

Average Americans are frustrated and puzzled. Regardless of good or bad, Americans just want the truth, but when they ask for the truth, they are castigated for being stupid. When they demand fairness, they are scolded for being bigots and racists. When they require respect, they are smeared for being arrogant or suffering some form of privilege. Average Americans certainly hold firm convictions about their values and may have some loose party identification, but they are generally not nearly as partisan as those who relentlessly practice and pursue politics with wild obsession.

Those who read or write political columns sometimes have difficulty understanding that average Americans do not immerse themselves in politics every waking moment. Average Americans occupy the middle of American politics with simple notions of truth, fairness, and respect, but they have been pushed aside and shouted down to the point it seems there is no middle ground anymore.

Legions of press, pundits, and too many politicians pounce on average Americans for wanting explanations for all the inexplicable double standards and nonsense coming from our bureaucracies and elected officials. If we ask questions of our ruling elite, we are summarily labeled extremists and dismissed. Regular people are tired of being lectured about left wing and right wing. They just want government to work for everyone.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has been particularly exasperating. When COVID first hit, Americans were fearful and therefore dutifully complied with CDC instructions thinking these must be prudent people. Despite mixed signals about masks, we wore masks, but now the CDC admits masks don’t really help. They now also admit social distancing was pointless. The CDC still advocates for vaccines, but their story keeps shifting from vaccines provide immunity to they slow the spread to they mitigate the severity when you get COVID anyway. As CDC credibility and vaccine efficacy keep declining, what are we to believe?

Parents across the country became troubled by ambiguous but onerous school masking rules, alarmed by socialist and racist laden curriculum, and shocked by radical LGBTQ teaching to grade schoolers. Genuinely anxious about the education of their children, they rightly asked pointed questions to their schools boards. Those schools boards closed ranks and reported concerned parents to the FBI which responded by labeling those parents as domestic terrorists.

Wyoming Congresswomen Liz Cheney just suffered a withering primary defeat after three terms. She claims she lost so badly because she chose the truth over Trump, but she lost because she ignored the overwhelming concerns of her constituents to pursue a personal vendetta. She like the rest of the establishment of both parties disrespect average Americans for demanding assurances of fairness. Wyoming voters did support President Trump, but like the vast majority of Americans they really just want our officials to ensure election integrity. They found Trump’s loss disappointing, but they found the lack of transparency even more disturbing.

The real tragedy of the 2020 Election is the grave damage to faith and trust in our elections. Why didn’t the leaders of both parties recognize the greater problem was not who won or lost, but rather the loss of confidence in our electoral institutions? Why didn’t they form a bipartisan commission to fully audit the 2020 Election and reassure Americans it was a fair election? Cheney’s answer was that Wyoming voters are dolts who embrace lies.

Beyond the lack of respect for voters, too many politicos demagogue the folks. James Carville declares, “Most Republicans are stupid and evil.” How is Cheney any different than Carville? Even Vice President Mike Pence admonishes Americans not to malign the FBI following the narrative that those who question authority are radicals. Americans unreservedly support law enforcement, but it is their duty to ask that no one abuse their power. Why didn’t Pence side with the people and demand the DOJ explain their extreme actions persecuting a former president and possible future nominee?

Most Americans whether Democrat or Republican occupy the middle; they just want government that works for everyone but is fair. The Democrat Party has been hijacked by leftists seeking socialism, but the Republican Party is also filled with establishment politicians that embrace big centralized government. The ruling elite of both parties wants to consolidate power and preserve it, so Americans that want to assure fairness, control education, and demand transparency are naturally at odds with too many of our elected officials and appointed bureaucrats.

If we could strip away the acute acrimony of national politics, local Democrats and Republicans could resolve most of our problems. Unlike national and too many state officials, local officials being closer to the people are held to the standard of results. They must perform and produce results or be voted out. That’s why national politics wants to mire the people in hopeless polarization, so they will not be held accountable while they wallow in pointless propaganda.

We The People still hold the ultimate power, but we must exercise it. The voters should vote out any politician that does not seek truth, uphold fairness, and offer respect. And they must demand that those they elect clean out the bureaucracies of those officials that also do not provide the same. This grand experiment in self-government is strained, but it’s not over yet. So, consider your votes carefully. Our continued freedom depends on it!

“Blessed are those who act justly, who always do what is right” (Psalm 106:3).

Pete Riehm is the host of Common Sense Radio heard 8 pm every Thursday on FMTalk106.5 or streaming at Email him at or on MEWE @PeteRiehm or read all his columns at

© Pete Riehm


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Pete Riehm

Born to German immigrants, Pete Riehm grew up in Texas as a first generation American. Working his way through college, he enlisted in the U.S. Naval Reserve. After graduating from the University of Houston, Pete was commissioned into the United States Navy through Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island. He also earned a Master's Degree in National Security from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas... (more)


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