Please grant me this post--I promise it will be my ONLY politically motivated post of the "season".
Is anyone else having a difficult time deciding who to vote for this next election? I am in a HUGE quandary. Many of my liberal friends call me a closet liberal, although I am a registered Republican. I often find that my ideals as a teacher conflict with my conservative views. If someone were to ask, I would consider myself an independent, but I like to vote in the primaries; so Republican I am. Today, a good friend sent me the following link:
Select the Candidate Quiz
I encourage everyone to complete it before reading on…..
I am not going to reveal who the quiz decided I should vote for. I am just rebellious enough to confess the candidate selected for me doesn’t have a prayer, but… this quiz ignited quite the discussion in my household tonight. First, I took the quiz and revealed my candidate. Then, Kent took the test and revealed his candidate. Finally, Chandler, my 11-year-old came up from playing downstairs and asked if he could take the test. For the next 30 minutes or so, we discussed abortion, taxes, death penalty, gay marriages and immigration. I don’t think I have ever discussed these topics with my son beyond the casual blurb here and there. It was interesting to read the questions with him, discuss what they meant, and then allow him to make the decision for himself. It was enlightening to have such deep discussions with one so young. Though I could easily have swayed his vote, I tried to be as “fair-minded” as possible and give him the information without the editorial—though I will admit on certain issues I expounded far more than necessary.
What makes up our moral compass when it comes to those we elect into office? As I watched my 11-year-old, I could see he answered from the “gut”. He has no experience with taxes or immigration and was simply concerned with the “people”—until we got to absolutes like the death penalty and abortion. On those issues he tended, like many folks, to be inconsistent with his decision. Someday someone will explain to me the “consistency” of being pro-life and pro-death penalty (when does life cease to have potential-but I will save that for another day).
Seems our political climate can be summed up in the following topics: the war, immigration, taxes, stem-cell research, health care, abortion, social security, line-item veto, energy, marriage and the death penalty. This list seems too small to encompass the values of an entire country. I wonder how many people truly understand the “issues”. I suspect many vote instead for the charismatic or the “popular”. I am more challenged than ever to explore where I stand on these questions. I need to ask myself more relevant questions such as what effects Presidential decisions will have on my life as well as upon the lives of the American community. I am energized to deliberately become more informed and to choose a Presidential candidate based on, not only my “gut” (or an on-line survey) but rational examination and discourse.
This I know for sure…
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