(The Magnolias - Photo courtesy of the City of Aberdeen)
Our little southern community recently held municipal elections.
These events almost always give me a headache, but this time the pain was much farther south, if you know what I mean.
Granted, our town is small. We have fewer than 10,000 residents. So why is it that not even half the registered voters turned out to help select the Mayor and the aldermen who will be making decisions for the next few years? The answer is very sad, and equally simple.
At some point in my lifetime – and I haven’t been around all that long - people have somehow come to believe that politics is a spectator sport. Phooey. Nothing could be further from the truth!
The very messy business of democracy - or in our case, a representative Republic - is an eye-gouging, get-down-and-wrestle-in-the-mud kind of party to which we’re not just invited. Our engraved invitation is etched in the blood of the patriots and heroes who have suffered and died to give us the opportunity to participate in the freedoms we so ignore as if such freedoms were without cost. Americans are bound by a sacred duty to make an appearance every couple of years in order that we might set the agenda and the direction for the generations to come. Is that so much to ask? Nope.
So, what’s worse than not showing up at the polls on Election Day?
The answer to that question is, showing up at the polls on Election Day without the foggiest idea why you will cast your ballot for Candidate A and not for Candidate B. Irresponsible, ignorant (and I mean that in the nicest possible Webster’s Dictionary way as in; totally without knowledge or understanding) voters have been dealing our democracy death blows for a very long time. This year, with so much at stake, the final blow to our American way of life may finally come if we fail to take seriously our responsibility to educate ourselves and cast informed ballots.
Hence this blog.
Since the former vice president, Al Gore, was kind enough to invent the internet, I feel compelled to use it liberally (pun not intended) to build some patriotic fires and fan a few revolutionary ideas into full flame. I want to re-kindle your interest in our Country.
To that end, I hope to reach as many Americans as possible to help them understand the candidates and their agendas before John Public arrives at the polling places in November. I’ll always be honest. That happens to be my best and worst quality. I call them precisely as I see them. I hope to always be fair, but I have to warn you, I’m terrified of what’s happened to our noble Nation. There are dark clouds gathering over the future of my grandchildren. I’m apt to get a little Mama Grizzly on you from time to time. The best news about that is, you are welcome to challenge me and not required to run, to play dead, or to climb the nearest tree if we disagree. That, after all, is called freedom of speech. Don’t you just love America?!