In the US, this year, we’re having elections all over the place. Primaries and General Elections
Whether we feel inspired or discouraged, the main issue isn’t whether we’re feeling inspired or discouraged. As people who care about the world we live in and hope to find ways to help, the real issue becomes whether we’re going to do what we can to help. The real issue is whether we’re willing to try with what we have.
The ballot box is one way of trying. Even if we don’t see many good and wonderful options in that ballot box – the issue becomes whether we’re willing to try to do what we can with what we have – or in this case – with who we have.
When we go into the ballot box, we’re not just saying “my vote counts”. We’re also saying, “I matter” – “I count” We’re saying I am one person and I matter in this world, in this nation, in this state, in this county and in this community. I matter. I touch this world. I am here. I am alive. I matter.
Granted, We may not be saying this aloud to anyone. More often, we don’t even realize we’re saying it within our own self. But, we are.
If we believe that as individuals we can have value by being alive, then we count as an individual alive in our world, right now.
Some may ask me, “Jodie, if you know the future or know who is going to win, why do you vote?” My answer is always – because my opinions, my thoughts, my ideas, my feelings have value – maybe not to “you”, but they do to me. And I’m going to express them. I matter and all of that which is within me matters. The other answer is that peoples’ freewill choices can change.
Someone once asked me who I was voting for and I told him. He said I was throwing my vote away, because that person couldn’t possibly win. But, I voted for the person who I WANTED to win, not for who I thought could beat the other person. I voted for who I wanted in the office – not for who I thought had a chance to win against the other person.
To me, I wasn’t throwing my vote away, because I voted for the person I wanted to hold the office. Others have the strategy of voting against “the other person”, whomever it may be that could beat “the other person”. I wonder how many people don’t vote for who they want to hold the office only because they don’t think this person could win. Instead, they vote for someone else because they vote against the other person – thinking this person could have a chance to win. This type of vote is common and it’s focus is – voting against a person, rather than voting for a person. They vote for who can prevent someone else from winning.
We all vote the way we want.
Final thoughts: John Adams once wrote (paraphrasing here) “Either wise men will come forward to run for public office, or others will.”
I add this: “Render unto Caeser that which is Caeser’s” also means contributing in our own way to being a part of the government system that we have accepted in our nation. When wise men and women don’t come forward to run, we are left with those others that do run and get elected. Being part of the citizenry, we still matter. Our vote still matters even when we are called to do the best we can with who we have – those that run.
PS. Someone else (I don’t remember who) mentioned a comment that (paraphrasing again) “when the younger generations [or any of us for that matter] don’t get involved, don’t run for office or don’t vote, this becomes a statement saying to the world, ‘we want rich, white old men determining the direction this country should be going’ [and all it’s policies.]” Obviously that’s a lot of generalized negative opinions, but it is a noticeable comment, nonetheless.