Today is Election Day in America, so I debated on whether to write a politics post or not. This is just a short post. My state has early voting, so I went and voted last week. There’s a straight, solid line connecting people who invest a lot of time in news and social media political drama every day and people on the left, who believe that either American democracy will end if their side loses control of Congress, and people on the right, who believe that if their side doesn’t win control of Congress our American republic is over. These same people seem very open to buying into wild conspiracy theories that cast “the other side” as evil, dangerous radicals, people who hate America, etc.
I realized that neither side of the media-driven political theater in America operates in good faith and took a step back from this, because the hysterical talking points may vary a bit between the two partisan camps and the media drama may tar “the other side” with different derogatory terms, but it’s all designed to get Americans angry and divide them. I’m determined not to hate anyone in my life and spending so much time worked up and angry isn’t good for anyone. Each day, I try to find things to be grateful for and find some rays of hope. You can find these inspirations almost anywhere. I came across one in a few seconds of a video I watched yesterday and am working on a blog post about that.
Yes, voting in one party that changes control of Congress or a state governor’s race may bring about very different policies and that’s why voting matters. In Washington, one party controlling both Congress and the White House can leave Americans who support different policies without any way to check one party rule. However, if you believe your party not controlling Congress or the White House spells the end of America, you’ve sure handed over America’s destiny to politicians and with over 330,000,000 Americans, that’s sure ignoring a whole lot of potential and American ingenuity. I prefer to have more faith in the American people than partisan politics.
A larger part of good citizenship in American than voting is civic virtue and that isn’t taught much anymore. We can all practice civic virtue by respecting other Americans views, being courteous to fellow citizens and teaching our children to respect other people’s right to have different views than our own. Unlike who wins elections today, our future really does depend on a culture where civic virtue is taught, expected, and practiced. I encourage everyone to vote, but please try not to get too caught up in the partisan drama and be respectful of everyone, regardless of their politics.