Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past year, you’re well aware that tomorrow is election day.
I’ve personally enjoyed this particular campaign process as much as I would having each and every one of my teeth drilled out by a berry-drunk, one-eyed squirrel, without the benefit of Novocaine or tequila. At least the squirrel would have an excuse for acting like an animal. The only other statement I’m making here is that if I had ever in my life even considered acting as ugly in public as both the candidates have, my momma would have torn my tail off of me and made me wear it for a hat. Color me “appalled.”
Three things you can’t talk about with people, because they lose their minds: politics, religion and super singles. I’m not sure why, but those things seem to incite the screaming four-year-old in all of us.
Fortunately, religion and super singles are things each individual can practice on their own. If your religion works for you and doesn’t hurt other people, I don’t care if you worship a paper sack. Doesn’t matter a bit to me, as long as you and your paper sack leave me alone to do my thing. (You should also let me know which paper sack is “the one,” so I don’t accidentally throw it away and possibly damn myself to a grocery hell.) And as far as the super single argument goes, for the love of paper sacks, don’t hate on something you’ve never used. There is nothing more disqualifying in a debate than lack of personal experience — I don’t care how many of “your buddies” have told you stories about it.
As for politics, well, that’s something we all suffer the effects of. It’s something we absolutely should be able to talk about in a sane, mature manner, but the problem with politics is the same as with super singles. You have an abundance of people who show up every four years with hay forks, screaming and snorting and pitching fits all over hell and creation about how great a candidate is. Unfortunately, they base this opinion not on personal experience, but what “their buddy,” the media, tells them. (It’s television and the internet, people, it’s not the honest to paper sacks truth. I know that may come a s shock to some of you, but trust me. There are other forms of gathering information.)
People whine and moan all the time about how “broken” our government is. I’m one of them. But my idea of why it’s broken is a lot different than the hay fork carriers. I know it’s broken because “we the people” have forgotten that “by the people, for the people” requires constant maintenance and daily work, by the people. You don’t just show up frothing at the mouth every four years.
This government was designed to be crafted from the ground up, by the constituents. That means participation in local and state government. That means following a potential presidential candidate from the time they’re a county clerk and watching their actions, it means governing the government. It means paying attention to and understanding the things going on in your State House, and participating by communicating with the people casting votes in your interest. It means a lot more work than putting a sign in your yard every four years.
Participating in the quadrennial clown show is great, but don’t bitch about the quality of the clowns if you only show up for the main event and the “I voted” sticker. Practice is what makes perfect. If you want a better government, practice having one, every single day. Go vote. Better yet, go vote on issues and people you’ve educated yourself about, and stay involved with those issues and people for the next four years. It’s your government, don’t let anyone tell you it’s not, and don’t give people power by not participating because you think you can’t make a difference.
Let’s do this.