I have a confession… I am a political season junkie.
I track it all the way back to Ross Parot. The young readers won’t know who I’m talking about, but this was when I realized that there was a serious problem with normal politics.
I have learned that if you want to know what someone is saying you really have to hunt for the uninterrupted transcripts of press releases and speeches. If you just want to know what someone else thinks about a politician then do what most people are doing right now and watch the news channel.
My first election opportunity came for me one month after I turned 18 and I’ve not missed one since (nation, state, county or city). I can’t wait to cast a vote and hear that election official call out my name as I submit my ballot; “Paul Thompson has voted!” That declaration ranks second of all the public statements I’ve heard in my life to this one; “Paul, you may kiss your bride!”
It was a few years after that first time I voted when Ross Parot entered the scene of politics and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Don’t get me wrong… I take my vote very seriously. I read as much as I can, I listen to every debate available, I send questions to local candidates wanting to know as much as I can before I exercise my privilege.
I am not owned by any political party. I’m a values voter.
- I want a federal government that lets the local community address education.
- I want a federal government that knows her judicial jurisdiction.
- I want a federal government that stops giving any money to any organization that aborts unborn babies.
- I want a federal government that will relinquish programs that create dependence of the poor.
- I want a federal government that protects all American citizens.
- I want a federal government that understands economics .
- I want a federal government that justly executes the sword with fairness while understanding timeliness.
- I want a federal government that leaves spiritual matters to spiritual houses.
- I want a federal government that respects geographical boundaries of sovereign states and does not empower activist judicial branches to change civic law.
- I want a federal government that respects the constitution.
- I want a federal government that respects the amendments to the constitution
- and a plethora of other matters… related to healthcare, student loans, transportation and on and on and on.
This leaves me in conflict at times; after all, what values are priority and what values are secondary when it comes to finding a candidate who meets all my hopes?
I have to be willing to make concessions on some maters while remaining non-negotiable on others. That means sometimes I vote with a political party and sometimes I go with another. I’m willing to vote for a non-Christian (not all claiming to be “Christian” are Christian). I’m not willing to vote for someone just because they are part of a particular political party. I read comparison sheets.
It was the debate season with Ross Parot, Bill Clinton and (then) President George H. Bush in 1992 that helped me become an independent thinker and a committed voter, responsible before my God to be informed and engaged.
Happy political season!