Seeking to be transformed into the image of Jesus

Elections in America

I requested an absentee ballot for yesterday’s election, but it never came.  I do try to stay informed and make good, educated decisions and vote each chance I get.  I suppose this time it’s just as well I didn’t get the ballot as I really didn’t know the candidates or the issues like I would like.  Of course, in American politics these days, I’m not sure if knowing the issues matters.  What matters is picking a party and making sure they win…right? 

One of the things that scares me about ever living in the US again is how polarized it appears the country has become politically.  Instead of a civil discourse on issues, each party seems to dig their heels in as deeply as possible so they can defend their views and shred their opponents to pieces.  There is no attempt to reach a common ground; no attempt to see what’s useful in the other’s thoughts; no attempt to have any sort of meaningful conversation.   At least that’s how it looks from here. 

Maybe I’m the only one who feels this way, but American politics makes me sick to my stomach.  It seems like instead of trying to win people’s hearts and convince them with substantive discussion, politicians and pundits insult and belittle; caricaturize and stereotype.  It’s all about winning…but at what price?  What ever happened to being “one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all”?  What ever happened to agreeing to disagree?  What ever happened to “I may not agree with what you say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it”?

I know, I know.  I’m naïve to think such things.  I’m sure people on both ends of the spectrum will have plenty of good reasons to defend their actions and attitudes.  I’m sure there are plenty of reasons why I don’t know what I’m talking about.  But, at least do me one favor when you tell me so, could you at least tell me in a nice way?  I’d like to learn something and I do better at that when I’m not being put down or insulted.  And who knows, I might have something useful to say too.  Would you listen?

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3 responses

  1. Sadly, as one who has been living in the USA and trying to follow what has been going on politically, I have to say that I agree with you to a large extent.

    Although I think there may be some issues upon which no middle ground may be available (e.g. overturning Roe v. Wade), there are certainly a number upon which some middle ground could be sought if there was any real willingness to dialog (e.g. a legitimate role for government in helping the poor).

    Perhaps the most disturbing thing about living where I live – in Illinois – is the widespread corruption of politicians who are willing to do anything to advance their own power or make money. As you said, it “makes me sick to my stomach.”

    November 3, 2010 at 9:44 pm

  2. Greg Miclette

    Rick,

    It is my belief that our country has moved, and is moving farther and farther from God. We are no longer “One Nation Under God” but rather one nation where I can have my way, no matter how destructive, anytime I please. I consider myself a “Conservative” and through my political chioces seek to bring our country back to its core values. It sickens me to see where we as a country are headed… It has been said that “A house divided cannot stand”. Unless we turn back to God I fear our democracy is doomed to fail.

    Greg

    November 3, 2010 at 9:49 pm

  3. Peggy G

    Thanks for those thoughts, Rick. After being “home” to watch all this for 6 years, I can only agree with you. The saddest part is that many who call themselves believing Christians are among the most offensive. As John said, “my brothers, this should not be.”

    November 4, 2010 at 11:22 am

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