“FWD: Re: URGENT!! PLEASE READ!!!!!!!!!!!”
“Sure, why not?” I tell myself.
“Dr. So-and-so of the religious far-right urges every AMERICAN to vote Republican in this coming election. If you do not, we Christians will lose everything! Babies will be murdered and you will be forced to learn to speak Spanish! Terrorists will over-run the White house, gays will hold raves in Central Park on television, and Satan will arrive on earth!”
“Oh, right, that’s why not …”
It’s November again. It has been for six months—wake up, stretch, brush your teeth, avoid the media. If you don’t, the television will tell you why both senatorial candidates in your state have made drinking your blood their top priority. The daily rag will undoubtedly confirm it. By the time you get to work, you’re on TERROR ALERT: HIGH, but it isn’t terrorists you’re afraid of anymore; it’s the press, your own country and the headline-grabbing American politicos who are so avidly leading everyone away from God.
On any given even-numbered year, you can expect to be reminded of the “homosexual threat” and the downside of stem-cell research. You can also expect the death-toll from Iraq to be displayed prominently in every possible location. In addition, you can expect to hear that so-called “liberal pinheads” want nothing more than to ruin the country that they otherwise seem so interested in, and you will also undoubtedly be reminded of the fact that the Bush White House has quadrupled our national debt. And of course, this is the fault of every G.O.P. member, and not just W. Ann Coulter will tell you that liberals are “Godless” and also stupid, while Al Franken will argue that Coulter is in fact the anti-Christ, and Bill O’Reilly will tell everyone to “SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!” before muting their microphones. But in spite of all the propaganda, less than half of the country will show up to vote for our leaders, and the fed-up majority will rediscover its love of cooking, football and gin-rummy. How can you blame them?
Generally speaking, politics have become the greatest farce of American traditions. It’s no longer about leadership or even democracy, nor is it central to issues that affect the everyday American; it’s now about right and wrong. So much is this the case, in fact, that there are vast pushes across the country for straight-ticket voting in the hopes that one “party" will gain or maintain “control" of the government, and many of these one-sided campaigns are being headed by evangelicals.
As Christians, the first thing on our minds when it comes to electing leaders, a privilege that a majority of our predecessors did not have, should not be in regard to what “party” they belong to. Often we are encouraged to vote our conscious, to vote in favor of morality, yet the same people issuing to us these urges are those who would encourage a straight-ticket ballot. The ethical status of the politicians in America today stands as proof that Americans are more concerned with their political affiliations than they are with morality. Generally speaking, Republicans are extremely moral people; capable, in the least, of being every bit as moral if not more so than Democrats. But a straight-ticket Republican ballot would have included in the past votes for ex-congressmen such as Mark Foley of Florida and Tom Delay of Texas, both guilty of felonious actions in the past year, both clearly unfamiliar with true morality.
Most Republicans are embarrassed by the Foleys and Delays of their party, just as most Democrats are embarrassed by Senator Kerry’s recent remarks in regard to the war in Iraq and the soldiers who die thousands of miles from home to ensure that his office and our country remain safe. As your preacher undoubtedly pointed out in church this Sunday, God is not a Republican or a Democrat. God is God. As Christians, we must learn to appreciate that our beliefs provide us with a unique vantage point on the world. God’s Word is beyond the laws and morals of our world, and no political entity has a corner on the Word of God.
The fact that we are incapable as a nation of filling the Senate and House with credible, moral individuals stands indicative to the truth that is the fallen state of mankind. Don’t vote Republican this election, and don’t vote Democrat. Do vote.
Technology has made knowing the stances and beliefs of political candidates extremely quick and easy to do. Research and know the candidates, and vote for the morality that you would like to see reflected by our government across the world. That is not the morality of any one political party, each one consisting of individuals who’s free-will often leads them astray, but instead, elect the morality of God, based on the merits of individual candidates.
The fear-mongers of American society would like everyone to believe that there are “highly dangerous” candidates out there, that casting the wrong vote could have a detrimental impact on the world in which we live. But the truth is far subtler than that. If we want America to become a moral, God-fearing society, we can’t allow ourselves to remain focused on the rift between our two major political parties. We must see the candidates for who they are, for what they are, and vote accordingly. The House of Representatives consists of 435 men and women who are meant to represent the American populace as a whole. The Senate is comprised of another 100 politicos who do essentially the same thing. It is important to elect Democrats if you define yourself as a Democrat and want to be defined as such. It is important to vote for Republicans if, first and foremost, you are a Republican, and again wish to be defined as such. However, if your primary affiliation, above and beyond that of politics, lies in your allegiance and dedication to Jesus Christ, then it is not a politician’s party that we should be concerned with, but his or her person.
Vote your morals this Tuesday, rather than your party.