Political Post: Reader Beware

So, last night, the Presidential election came up in conversation, between two people of very different political persuasions. One man, a conservative, says to his sister, a liberal: “I’m voting for Romney so that we don’t have to live like this anymore!”

“Live like how??” she asked. He couldn’t answer.

They let the conversation drop – but it got me thinking about why I’m voting the way I am.  Most of us know who we are going to vote for (if we’re voting – and I hope everyone is!).  But it’s hard for most of us to articulate exactly why we think or feel the way we do – what’s important to us?  What do we care about?  What future do we see for ourselves, our families, our neighbors?  

I don’t typically post anything political or ideological on my blog, though I do get personal at times.  But, I believe elections are important.  I believe they’re not just our right and privilege as Americans, but also our responsibility.  So, you’ve received your fair warning, your disclaimer, etc.  If you’re not interested in politics – you can turn away now.  

Let me tell you about the world I live in. Let me tell you why I’m voting for President Obama.

The world I live in is one in which America actually has a chance to become America again. It is a world in which slow & steady wins the race – where 32 straight months of job growth and reductions in unemployment actually mean something. It’s a world where nations of the world have begun to respect and to work with America and its leaders again. It’s a world where truth and integrity count and where personal freedoms are more valuable than offshore savings accounts. This is an America where, when our nation or its people are attacked, the President doesn’t just gin up fear for political gain, he goes after the people who did it and ends them – period.

I live in a world where people are people and corporations are corporations. I live in a world where no ONE religion is allowed to tell ALL women what to do with their bodies. It’s an America where, if you don’t believe in abortion or in contraception, then you don’t have to have them – but you don’t have the right to make that decision for anybody else. I live in a world where the lessons in the Bible should matter to the people who thump it, where Christ’s teachings are practiced by Christians, and where the Constitution (which tells us that a Citizen, with all rights thereof, is one BORN or Naturalized in the United States of America – not an egg that has been fertilized there) is truly respected.

I live in an America where brave, awe-inspiring men and women who love this country so much that they leave their homes and risk their lives to protect it, don’t have to hide who they are or be made ashamed of who they love while they’re fighting for our liberties. I live in America where, when these heroes come home, they are taken care of – with housing, education, and the mental and physical healthcare they need.

I live in an America where success and innovation are rewarded and applauded, but where those with less are not ignored and where those with diseases or disabilities are not treated like third-class citizens, to catch scraps wherever they can. I live in an America that values all of its people, that actually does treat all men and women equally. It’s a country whose people realize that all of us are at risk of getting sick or injured at anytime, through no fault of our own, and that just because you’re not wealthy doesn’t mean you don’t deserve the best care and the most dignified hospice.

In short, I live in an America that reminds us what it is to be American and why the idea of “America” is so unique to history. I believe in the America that is and has been such a dream to people of other nations, where anything is possible, where all people have a chance to make it if they try, and where nobody is held down, bullied, mistreated, or denied rights simply because they are different.

I believe that President Obama lives in this America, too. That he cares about this America, too. And that’s why he’ll get my vote in November.


21 thoughts on “Political Post: Reader Beware

  1. I do enjoy an occasional political debate, but I’m out of luck, because I am in 100% agreement with you. :-P I hope your vision comes to pass.

    I am frustrated with the tendency of Americans to complain when a president doesn’t wave a magic wand and effect a complete transformation on our country in a mere 4 years. I try not to scapegoat any president, regardless of party — Lord knows both of our two major parties has its share of problems. But I don’t mind saying that our last president left a wholly mess on so many levels. I am confident that my vote for Obama is our best chance of gradually moving forward rather than backward. ‘Nuff said.

    Excellent post, Adam — thoughtful and eloquent. And as I said on Twitter, in not so many words, even if you were pounding the pundit for Romney, I’d still be an avid reader. :-D I don’t stop speaking to people over politics — I really don’t understand why some people do. Ah, well.

    1. I think you’re exactly right about our two party system! I really wish we could open up the stage to all the minor parties (Green, Libertarian, etc.) to get involved in the major debates and really give Americans more of a choice. I honestly don’t think the two party system works anymore.

  2. This year I tried to really think about what issues were most important to me. There are a lot of things that I care about but I narrowed it down to what things would be devastating to me and those I care about if they were to go in a less than favorable direction. I decided that it’s my right to have control over my own medical choices, a more healthy world environment for my child and future generations, and the right for people of any orientation to be able to validate their love through marriage and family. There’s only one presidential candidate who believes in those things (and one gubernatorial candidate in my state) so that’s who I will be voting for.

    1. That’s great! Not just that we agree on these issues, but that you took the time to think about it. I think about how lucky I am to have been born in a time and place that allows me this opportunity – honestly how many places in the world, even know, give their people this power? Not many. To ignore it or to take it lightly just seems so wrong to me.

  3. I have to agree with everything you said. I think that people vote anymore on because of one issue or how fast they think something will work. I have come to understand just like you that slow and steady wins the race. Let’s hope that happens!

    Thank you for your insight.

  4. Wonderful post, Adam! And I don’t understand why you lost followers since your reviews already show perfectly who you vote (or at least, your ideology).

    I’m not American but I love Obama. Not only did he got to where he is with hard work, but he is humble about that hard work. Michelle is also a great inspiration for me, but that is out of the question.

    On the other hand, I understand people can choose to vote conservative, but I don’t understand why they have to use the non-sensical arguments they use: the night of the debate, a GOP mommy twittered that Obama is giving guns to foreign drug dealers (who also happen to live illegally in the USA) to kill Americans. WHAT? You can like conservative politics, ideas or a certain politician, but when you restore to that kind of arguments, you lose my respect.

    I hope most Americans think like you do, Adam, and vote the only option that is reasonable.

  5. Adam, I could not agree with you more. More importantly, I am voting to reelect the president because it is quite likely that the next president will be appointing two, or more, justices to the U.S. Supreme Court. Women’s rights and a whole host of civil liberties loom large in the context of those appointments, and a Romney administration making those appointments frankly scares the hell out of me. This is a very important election from that perspective alone. Cheers! Chris

  6. Fantastic post! I love that you were able to articulate your position so well and not resort to slamming the opposition. So much of politics is negative, and it is really frustrating to hear candidates essentially saying, “You should vote for me because the other guy sucks,” rather than, “You should vote for me because I will do a great job; here’s why.” (I also agree that the two-party system is problematic; it makes people focus on fitting into one mold or the other instead of trying to actually solve problems in the best possible way.)

    Your post is very thoughtful and eloquent, and I completely agree.

  7. There is always room for a little politics especially in the book blogging world! Let’s face it it is part of every day life. It is nice to read a post that comes from the heart and also declares a view with passion.

    Personally I think it is very important to feel passionate about the country that you live in and if there is a leader that can emphasise that fact and show that there is in fact support from the top then all the more reason to vote for said person.

    Obama has influenced so many with his views and actions and will continue to do so for many years – there will always be the people with the view of that man ‘i cannot continue to live like this’ and my question would be ‘why? is it because you are being told that you have to work for what you have instead of being given it for little graft?’

    As you are proud to be an American i can say despite my countries wayward actions towards benefits systems which is only one of the few problems I am still proud to be British. Some may see it as a fault but that is my opinion and that is all that matters as does your opinion on your choice of vote!

    Great post :D

  8. Adam, this may be one of the best posts you’ve ever written… and I don’t say that lightly. I think you’ve just effectively summarised not only what your vote means to you, but also why half of Britain sat up late the night of the last election, fingers crossed, fervently hoping that Obama would be your next President. There’s just something about him that makes us see a man instead of a politician; a leader instead of a caricature; a heart instead of a scheme. In my mind, anyone who would remove a woman’s rights to decide what happens to her own body, or viciously condemn a person for who they love, should NOT be the leader of the most powerful nation on Earth. As an English girl I can’t vote – but rest assured, I’ll be sitting here with everything crossed for you – and him – all over again!

    1. I’m always curious to hear what other countries think of our politics. I know most Americans aren’t thrilled by the fact that we’re so scrutinized (of course – there are the stereotypes out there, about how all Americans are Cowboys who think we own the world, but that’s just not the case for most people) – but we are the wealthiest nation with the largest military, and those things come with a certain amount of responsibility. I get that. That’s why I shudder when I see someone like Romney taking a “world tour” and telling our allies, like England, that they really botched up the Olympics and sure could have used his help, or when he claimed Israel’s success was due to it’s cultural superiority to Palestine, and that it must be blessed by the hand of providence… then he tells a Polish labor party that he would try to end worker’s unions! Then, of course, he calls Russia our greatest enemy (what??) and claims he’ll take on China – even though most of the corporations he put out of business here in the U.S. sent their jobs to China. Sigh. It’s not hard to see why, when we elevate people like this into our highest leadership roles, America would look troubled (or troubling) to the people of other countries. =/

  9. I haven’t had much time to comment before now, but I loved this post so much. You voiced my exact feelings in a way I never could. Lately, I’ve been concerned about the fact that some people don’t know why they plan to vote the way they do. Just a few weeks ago someone said they were voting against Obama. When I asked why, they said they weren’t sure but they knew we didn’t want him to stay in office. The whole conversation just made me so sad. It’s nice to read something from someone who knows what they want and why they’re voting for who they’re voting for.

  10. I love this post and it eloquently sums up a lot of the same issues that are important to me as well.

    I’ve already voted (thanks to early voting here in Maine) and I am proud to say that I voted for President Obama as well. I think that he genuinely cares about people and this country. His recent trip to NJ to survey the damage of Sandy brought tears to my eyes when I saw him hugging every person he met and asking if their families were safe and that things would be okay. I think he truly believes that and I could not see Mitt Romney doing the same thing.

    I also admire the President for his stance on women’s and LGBT rights. It shows not only that he greatly respects his wife and two daughters, but that he understands that just because one is part of a same sex couple, they should have the same rights as every couple.

    He is a true leader, even when he isn’t popular and he is a man that I feel that I can trust and respect.

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