Do you vote?
Do you vote in all elections, federal, state and local?
Some people vote in federal elections only, like President, Senators, House of Representatives perhaps because they think those elections are more important.
Others vote in federal and state, like for governor and state senate and legislative representatives. But unfortunately, very few, and most cases nowhere near the majority of eligible voters vote local. I really wonder why that is because in so many ways local elections may be the most important, the most impactful directly so on the lives of local citizens.
But, again, do you vote? So many, far too many citizens do not vote. In fact, almost 50% of eligible voters do not bother to vote. They are withdrawn from the process, hardened and turned off by politicians, by political corruption, by self-serving and egocentric individuals power-hungry so they stay home on Election Day. Why bother to vote, they say when:
No change, real change happens. So many Americans believe their vote is irrelevant, doesn’t really matter. After all, it’s only one vote. So I will stay home, says this nonvoter, really un-American eligible voter, especially if the weather is bad. After all, what difference does one vote make?
But the vote is the power of the people. It is your and my ultimate power, our ability to control our country, our states and our local governments and to effectuate our beliefs, our concerns and our priorities for America. That is real power. But voting can also strongly influence others to vote, and perhaps to vote like you. We the voters have the power of persuasion, even if it is only two or three gathered together to think alike and vote alike. That is real power. That is the spread of responsibility to democracy and to the realization and preservation of the American Dream. The vote is the most powerful expression of democracy. Do you vote?
America, like every democratic society, culture and civilization always has potential, always. America is always a work in progress, its citizens moving this great country in the right direction. Polls time and again ask American voters whether or not in fact our great country is “politically heading in the right direction.” So many say no and so many of those nay-sayers don’t vote. What a stunning and disappointing fact.
But a vote to be meaningful must be INFORMED. A true voter is one fully educated and informed for regard to the issues, the platforms, the candidates and of course the political parties. So many people simply vote emotionally, stereotypically simply Democrat or Republican, for example. No matter the candidates or the issues, there are those that are lifelong democrats, voters who would never even think about voting for anyone other than a Democratic, and of course the very same for Republicans. And then there are those who are liberal, or radically liberal, or those who are conservative, or so called ultra-right conservative. They will only vote, these so-called extreme conservatives, for a true conservative and if that is not an option, these potential voters do not vote. I do hope and pray that you are not one of them.
And then there are voters who vote in the majority for a certain type of special candidate. There were many for example in 2008 and 2012 who voted for Barack Hussein Obama because he was black, well at least half black. Those voters were willing to ignore the white half of Obama and settle for a half black President, better than nothing. There are those who champ at the bit to vote for Hillary Clinton because she would be America’s first female President, no matter her qualifications or the qualifications of her opponents. This year, there may be the opportunity to elect a Hispanic for President, one such as Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio. There may even be the opportunity to elect an avowed and open socialist, a senator in our political system who does not believe in democracy, but rather socialism. And then there is the nonpolitician, the one-of-a-kind Donald Trump. Businessman, street smart, big-time, loud and aggressive, the prototypic anti-politician, anti-establishment especially the old guard republican establishment-party. Obama brought a philosophic and racial change to politics and consequently the presidency. There may be an even more radical change to the presidency, if that is possible, if any of these interesting and quite different candidates are elected and become President.
It almost really matters not who they are, what they are like or what they say they believe. There is not now nor has there ever been a candidate who runs for the office of President of the United States who hasn’t made campaign promises never really fulfilled when elected. There are those who even hide, cover up their real intentions, real political beliefs (many think Obama was that kind of candidate), wielding the unbelievable power of the presidency to accomplish that hidden agenda. Millions may have voted for Obama without really understanding his political platform, personal philosophy and certainly what he meant by CHANGE. Hardly anyone could foresee how radical this President would be.
So, we can vote because we are philosophically committed, conservative or liberal. We can vote because we are party-rooted and forever committed, like Democrat and Republican. We can vote by issue whether social such as abortion first or political, smaller and less controlling government or more government and more control no matter the cost to individual freedoms. America is a fascinating experiment in power, politics and potentiality and it is formed in so many ways by voters who may be uninformed or vote for emotional and subjective reasons. It may well be that American voters never crystallize their thinking, beliefs, values and priorities until such time as government detrimentally intrudes on those lives, such as taxes, far more taxes than any American thinks he should pay. Or perhaps, when a government and the judicial system espouses a non-traditional so called constitutional right such as gay marriage. So again the question, whatever your motivation and beliefs may be:
DO YOU VOTE?
That is the most important part and privilege of citizenship.
Sadly, so many Christians do not vote. So many have withdrawn from the political system, declaring themselves citizens not of this earth but heavenly, celestial citizens so to speak. They see the affairs of this world as unredeemable, corrupt and they withdraw. But they do not submit to or become an intelligent part of the authority of the political system even though Christians are in essence commanded to so participate as the Apostle Paul has indicated in Romans 13. God has ordained Christians who live here as Americans, democrats in the sense that we are part of a democracy, God-ordained, which carries with it the PRIVILEGE AND THE DUTY to vote. So many Christians don’t see it that way, but they should. It is perhaps more of a requirement and privilege for Christians to vote than others.
Voting protects the equality of all people and the right to speak and be heard. Americans by voting protect the rights of the First Amendment including and especially Freedom of Speech, the freedom to spread the Gospel and to protect the Constitution.
By voting, it is the opportunity of any Christian to select and support the right leaders, the better moral candidates and those who will lead and make decisions guided by truth and fact. “All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men (and women) to do nothing. And nothing is more like nothing than not voting.
Like one grain of salt, one vote is powerful. It does in fact make a difference in and of itself and in terms of motivating others to do what is right. We live in one grand country, a lifestyle the very best in all of history. That is our incredible privilege and we should protect and defend the lifestyle opportunities which God has given us. Nonvoting shows indifference to America, its potentiality and democratic citizenship. You are, say many, a citizen of this great country because God so ordained, at least for Christians. Therefore, Christians must participate and consequently must vote. Voting is therefore part of the stewardship of a Christian, good works for the good of America and as one writer has said:
“To waste a vote is to squander a gift.”
Many Christians think that even Jesus Christ commanded Christians to fulfill the responsibility of citizenship as part of the involvement with and participation in civil authority and government:
“Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s.”
Render means involvement, participation, fulfilling the requirements of a democracy chief of which is THE VOTE. I ask again:
DO YOU VOTE?
And if not, why not. You should not, say so many, reap the benefits of this great society, this one-of-a-kind democracy unless you participate.
Now come Elections 2016, federal, state and local, but especially federal. Every four years, we elect a President. That seems to stimulate the most voting interest and participation, more so than any other kind of election federal, state or local. There are millions who think that this election November 2016 is the most important, the most critical presidential election ever. I fully agree. Americans will in effect choose whether or not to move this great country farther down the Obama road with the election of Clinton or Sanders, or change course, CHANGE BACK by the election of a President who will in fact change course such as Trump, Cruz, Rubio or perhaps even Carson. The four years 2017-2020 will forever form what America will be for the long term, so say so many. There will be the replacement of Supreme Court justices, essentially liberal or conservative depending upon the President. Foreign policy will be made anew or continued on. Social policies will change more so the Obama way or back to more traditional and constitutional America values. Your vote and mine in November will in so many ways be a one-of-a-kind vote, more critical than ever.
Whether Christian or not, you are an American and it should be both a privilege and a duty for you to:
Now come the primaries, and finally we the people can be free of polls, speculation, debates, trends and possibilities. WE THE PEOPLE now take charge, and tell the country what we think and what we want in the way of leaders. Primary voting in New Hampshire, South Carolina, Nevada and Iowa as a start will indicate how Americans think and feel about their-our future. That will be so very exciting and rewarding. I would hope and pray for the largest voting turnout ever in the history of American elections in November 2016.
I pray that you are one of those voters.