One of the realities of a democracy that is as certain as death, taxes and change is the vote every legitimate citizen has for giving voice to their concerns about their country’s future.
Unfortunately, it is almost as certain that a good percentage of Americans will choose not to vote or to ignore the opportunity altogether, creating an indifferent, impotent silence.
Politics is not a dirty word, despite the fact that politics, like the engine of a car, can be dirty. The core of government is by nature political; it is where the power resides.
Political parties seek to claim such power to impose their different and often contentious perspectives on the country’s future. Theoretically, that perspective belongs to the voters – those who elect their representatives and lawmakers to office.
The wonder of our particular democracy is that, despite the narrowest margins of victory in our elections, particularly presidential ones, the “losers” accept and live with the “people’s choice,” determined by a simple majority or electoral votes.
That choice often reflects the promises made throughout the campaigns of those seeking the power to deliver them, which seemingly rarely happens.
The fact remains, however, that the voters’ voices are heard – and accepted by all.
Why this concern so early on? Because promises are already being made and a promise repeated often enough can be seen as a “done deal” just over a year from now.
And because reluctant and even cynical voices need to be heard in the voting booths. Anyone concerned about this country’s future needs to pay attention to every candidate’s promises, to confront any indifference in themselves and to exercise their best Buyer Beware mindset over the coming months. And then VOTE.
Our democracy is made up of many voices, all of them important, most deserving respect and being heard on Election Day. Before then the candidates court votes in the same way that auto dealers court buyers.
Many so-called facts, dancing to bells and whistles, fall flat when one takes the time to talk about them or check them out. It is never too early to do so.
Come November 2016, the collective voice of this democracy will elect a new president. There is much at stake here at home and even more around a terrorized world.
A true leader delivers more than promises, using the power of the people, their voices, their votes to protect and strengthen the freedom and the dreams essential to the pursuit of everyone’s happiness.