In a country filled by people going through the motions with their marriages, parenting, friendships, jobs, etc., does it really surprise me that voting has gone the same way? Unfortunately, I believe our political process reflects the apathy that invades all the important things in our lives. We don’t prepare for it, we’re not willing to make the hard decisions in order to sustain growth in the future and we’re unwilling to sacrifice ourselves for the greater good. It’s a plague in America — a plague that is stealing our identity and strength. When apathy takes root, it’s difficult to escape and often leads to bondage.
I consider voting to be a pillar of what’s left of our democracy. But, to be honest, I look at my choices in the 3rd Congressional District of Iowa and nearly vomit. Boswell’s demeanor and approach in the debate I saw was pathetic and unbecoming of what I think a House member should be. He was nasty and rude. It was pathetic. Zaun sat there and couldn’t formulate a thoughtful response to counter the fact that his opponent was incapable of speaking about anything positive he’d done in Congress since he got there — well, except campaign. Boswell was wide open to a bright candidate destroying him like my daughter destroys her breakfast bar every morning. But alas, said bright candidate wasn’t involved in that debate. The governor’s race? Really? That’s the best we can do?
What saddens me is that there are incredible people out there that would be terrific for turning around the direction of our country, but they’re not interested. Why? I don’t know. I have some theories, but I can’t say I know them to be true.
So here’s what I’m going to do on this election day.
1. I’m going to vote. Where I can, I’m going to vote for 3rd party candidates to encourage those with new ideas to run in the future. However, I’m a little limited by that option. I thought I’d vote for the 3rd candidate in the Boswell-Zaun race, but after learning that she’s really a full fledged socialist, I’ll pass. Democrats and Republicans are doing just fine at moving this country towards socialism without bringing in the professionals. When I’m stuck between evils, I’m going to vote for the outsider. Again, to encourage better candidates next time around. Nothing prevents a potential candidate from running quite like a knowledge that the encumbant is entrinched.
2. I’m going to pray. Pray for guidance on who has the best character (unlikely to get much help here — not because of God’s lack of disclosure but because the question may not be answerable). I’m also going to pray for the winner, that they would be (become) leaders with integrity and hearts devoted to serving their neighbor. I have to admit, if I could find a serving leader of integrity on my ballot, I’d vote for them. I’m going to pray that some God driven concoction of politicians is going to lead us into reform and national resurrection.
3. I’m going to vote to preserve the separation of powers.
4. I’m going to take my son with me. If there’s a gift I can give him, it’s for him to be a part of the voting process. First and foremost, blue hairs love his little face, so that’ll make them happy. And since I won’t vote until after 6PM, they’ll be up past their bedtime and in need of a boost. Secondly, I want to him to remember from an early age that inclusion in democracy is a special thing. Maybe someday he’ll be a leader with integrity, willing to serve his neighbor and not focus on his own profit.
From my perspective, this election is a loser. But, my perspective has been shown to be wrong before — at least twice. I’m going to vote because I get to and I’m going to hope that I look back on this post and see that I was dead wrong about the people who will be elected. That’s my hope.