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From the Kitchen Table


And Everybody Said, Amen

by Peg Luksik
 

We all say it at the end of every prayer, mostly without even thinking about it. In actuality, when we say, "Amen", we are saying, "So be it", meaning that we agree with the words expressed in the prayer we are responding to.

Our vote is our political Amen.

When we go to the polls as voters, we are actually telling the political establishment what actions we wish it to take, and not to take, in the halls of government. It's not just that we are choosing the candidates who will be elected. We are also choosing the priorities and directions for public policy. Most of us ignore the second part of our choice and focus only on the candidates.

The political establishment wants that limited focus. They want to control the priorities and direction without voter input. That is why they spend so much time and money trying to focus the debate on why we should vote against the "other guy". They don't want to discuss the issues in a meaningful way. They want to make us voters so afraid of one candidate that we will vote for anybody to keep that scary person from getting elected.

If we cast our vote because we were afraid of the scary candidate, and not because we actually agreed with the one we voted for, we have just lost the more important part of our Amen power.

No one knows if each vote was cast...

as a vote against someone or a vote for someone. The votes just get counted, and the person with the highest number wins. And after the election, the same political establishment that spent so must time and money getting us to vote against its scary opponent will now claim that each and every ballot was actually a vote for the winning candidate it supported. So the establishment will claim support for its agenda whether or not such support was in the minds of the voters.

Before casting a single vote, each of us should take the time to look at the priorities each candidate has set, at the issues each candidate cares about, at the positions each candidate has taken, and at the record each candidate has created. If the candidate does not measure up to our standards, we should not say Amen to that candidate with our vote.

We have spent the past two decades playing by the establishment's rules. We have allowed them to tell us that it is unrealistic to hold to our values in the voting booth, while they actively worked to promote their own. We have bought their lie that fear is more important than principles when we cast our ballots. We have swallowed every one of their promises, enabling them to gain power today so they could fix things on some undefined tomorrow.

Everyone agrees that it's time for a change. What no one is saying is that the change we so desperately need begins with each of us as a voter in the ballot box. If we vote the same old way, we will get the same old thing. The labels may change, but the direction won't.

On November 4, let us together begin to take our country back by only voting for those who have proven that they meet our standards. Let us abandon fear and vote with principle. Let us, with our ballots, send a resounding "Amen!" to the words written when this country was founded. The words that proclaimed that the guardians of America's liberty are, in fact, We the People.


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