Saturday, September 29, 2012

2nd Saturday of Seven

Thanks for returning to this 2nd Saturday of Seven.

One of the reasons I set out to do this was because I have heard people express a desire to be more informed and involved in the political process but they feel like it's just too much of a nasty business. 

And they would be right. Some aspects of politics are really ugly. People write really nasty things about individuals or collective groups or parties in the newspaper and especially on the internet. The language gets as bad as a jr. high hallway. I'll be honest, around June or July I could start to sense the onslaught of how ugly this was going to get and I was ready to go into hiding from any news media online or otherwise until November was through. Is it fair though, that those who fight so dirty can intimidate the rest of us into ignorance?

No, it's not. This decision is just too important. 

I encourage you to elevate yourself above the garbage, the cynicism, the name-calling and negativity. Rather than settle with being disgusted, look for other outlets that will provide you the information you're looking for. And do NOT read the conversations below any of the campaign YouTube videos. Yeah, that will ruin your day.

Every Saturday up to the election I am posting a reason why I have chosen to cast my vote the way I have. If you if you feel like it's the right thing to do, please share these posts through email 
and on Facebook with friends and family in your state and out of your state whose vote
is undecided or maybe even decided.

I was kind of taken aback the first time I heard it.

"I am not voting for Mitt Romney because he is a Mormon."
 Well, I'm not voting for Mitt Romney because he is a Mormon, either.

A few years ago, I was in a class for teachers. At one point, the discussion turned to the Civil Rights Movement and how much has changed in our country because of individuals like Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks, and you bet the fact that we had just elected our first black president was mentioned. We talked about how much our views had changed for the better because an event like that had been able to take place.

Then a woman raised her hand and said, "Did you see the map the night of the election? Did you see how red Utah was?" (referring to how our electoral votes did not go to Barack Obama). She scoffed and then finished, "What does that say about people around here and how far we haven't come?"

Ho ho ho ho (that's the sound I make when I need to gather my thoughts).

The presenter looked fairly uncomfortable in that moment--like he wanted to get off the topic as soon as possible. But I raised my hand, and when his eyes met mine, I stared him down with the same intensity of a third-grader whose grandma has just been to Egypt and you've mentioned Egypt in the lesson and she might die if you don't call on her so she has the chance to tell you and the rest of the class about it. 

And so he called on me (good thing). I explained that I hadn't voted for Obama. It would have been an honor and a privilege to have voted for the first black president had I agreed with his policy. But had I voted for him just because he was black, I would be doing my country a disservice. A vote shouldn't be based on race.

And it shouldn't be based on religion either.

I am a Mormon.  My faith is a core part of my identity. And I'm not going to lie to you. It's exciting to see Mitt Romney in the running. It reminds of the time my dad got picked out of the crowd to do the YMCA on a family cruise last spring. That was our guy up there!

But while my dad instantly had my vote for best portrayal of the Village People because he is my dad, Romney had to pass under a little more scrutiny before he had my vote for president.

This vote is too crucial to cast because I look up and see "our guy" up there.
I am not voting for Mitt Romney because he is a Mormon.
I AM voting for Mitt Romney for the reasons I will list in the remaining five posts.
A vote shouldn't be based on race.
and it shouldn't be based on religion, either.

P.S. There is a debate this Wednesday, October 3. Watch it. More information here.

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