GREENVILLE — It was only fitting and timely for the State of the Nation, to begin with, an appreciation for those who serve their community and country.
The Darke County Chamber of Commerce Legislative luncheon was hosted by the Brethren Retirement Community with Ohio’s 8th Congressional District Congressman Warren Davidson on Friday.
Diane Ewing, CCO of Premier Health and a director on the Chamber Board, opened the luncheon on the recent tragedies in the region — the death of Dayton Police Detective Jorge DelRio on Nov. 4, killed in the line of duty, the mass shooting in the city that took the lives of nine, and the Memorial Day tornadoes.
It was only the night before that Ewing was at the Schuster Center in Dayton on Main Street for an event when she noted several police cruisers were driving slowly, lights on but no sirens and an ambulance pass the building.
“That turned out to be part of the Detective DelRio’s last journey,” said Ewing. She explained how police officers, firefighters, and first responders put their lives on the line every day, that it was an honor to be there to see it, but at the same time, “so incredibly sad.”
Ewing emphasized the word “resiliency” in those who serve and for other individuals, including representatives.
As a guest speaker, Congressman Davidson, who served in the United States Army for twelve years that included Germany at the fall of the Berlin Wall, noted America’s long line of heroes, those who “have served our country, selflessly.”
The Congressman compared the treatment of Vietnam veterans to that of “our police officers today,” highlighting Det. DelRio’s death before briefly touching on a variety of hot topics.
Those topics included the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) with Mexico and Canada already signed on, “hopefully we’ll get a vote on it soon,” to ongoing negotiations with China, the Congressman having traveled to the country last month.
Davidson also cited the cease-fire negotiated between the Kurds and Turkey, without “committing” the country to war. That diplomacy was one of the reasons that he ran for office, not that he was against a strong military. “It makes your diplomacy much more successful. If you want peace, prepare for war.”
He went on to state that ongoing war was not making America more secure but leading towards bankruptcy.
“We’re in the process of bankrupting our country fighting other people’s wars,” continued Davidson. “The hook to me is don’t bankrupt America.”
The Congressman also briefly noted the country’s debt, which he sums up as “freedom versus free stuff, and I just think defend freedom” to the Medicare for All debate.
“The problem isn’t necessarily who picks up the tab, the problem is it costs too much,” said Davidson. He cited healthcare as six percent of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) in the 1960s to nearly 19 percent today as a massive transfer of wealth from “everyone else” to the industry. However, he did note “everyone is sick” of the current system except for the health insurance companies “they like it, they like it a lot, it is great for them.”