Energy and Why it Must Take Center Stage

Vanessa Reguitti, November 1978

President Carter has continuously demonstrated his honest belief that it is necessary for the country to move from foreign energy dependency towards a more efficient domestic production. We have heard of several different proposals from the president on how to reach his designated energy production demands, many of which seem quite high. There has also been much talk on the recent development that the president has not been content with the proposals developed by congress. Yet, unlike the reactions of many, speaking on how the president has talked much but not acted, this reluctance from the president to accept the minimum should lead us to take energy as important as the president has. By standing behind Mr. Carter, we can together lead the United States to once again be the country it was before.

Inflation dependency on oil has been quite a topic of discussion; greatly influencing the way the president must handle energy efficiency. There are several arguments on whether taxes should be raised, how tax revenue should be used, and whether the oil embargo is a reason to believe foreign oil becoming limited truly is an issue that will affect us as a nation in a short period of time.

What should be seen as an issue in our government’s handling of this energy situation, more than how president Carter has attempted to tackle several questions at once, is the negative view carried by several members of congress who do not believe in Carter’s proposals. Such disagreements can be seen through public shows such as the ABC special where it was heard that, “Carter’s proposals would lead to a massive intrusion of government into the most critical sector of our economy.” Comments like these claim to be for the people, but clearly only bring doubt where no citizen would want it: onto the president. The country should be able to openly rely on the president, and believe that what he believes is where the country should be concentrating its efforts. Even the president himself has reportedly began to attempt to follow the conservation efforts he has set forth to the common person, in order to show that it is necessary and affects everyone.

President Carter has continuously attempted to remind the American public on how serious this energy crisis truly is, mentioning how we actually use more energy than we import. Still, according to a recent article, “When the president spoke to the nation on energy…50% of the American people thought there was no energy problem. He asserted that, today, more than 50% of the people still did not think so.” This can clearly be defined as a remaining lack of trust between the public and government, strange due to the many attempts Carter has made to show that he is truly one of the most honest presidents this country has had. It is impossible, as the president must see himself, to make changes in the way this country deals with energy without complete support. How can he choose a way to proceed, if not everyone is willing to follow it for lack of belief that there is a problem in the first place?

Through his presidential addresses and the promises he has made, Carter should have our trust in the reality and gravity of this energy crisis. His activism has been presented once again if only through the efforts he has made to help bring back this country to the heights it was once at. Telling facts plain and simple, without dramatizing in the slightest, there is surely no reason to think Carter may be exaggerating the gravity of this issue. With gas lines increasing energy continues to loom over us, hopefully the nation as a whole will, as it has in the past, stand up for what is truly important for the benefit of the entire nation. Here, that is reducing energy usage and foreign dependency, to make the United States stand strong and independently once more.

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