Two weeks ago I wrote about character and how we define our own reputations. Our reputations are based on the shadow cast by our character, but the size and depth of that shadow depends on our own actions, the hardships we’ve faced, and the destiny we forge for ourselves.
We are experts when it comes to our own character and we alone make the choices by which our reputation takes shape. By what measure do we judge another person’s character? What if things are a bit clouded and we can’t see their shadow too clearly? How do we judge their character?
Do we judge another person’s character by their words, actions, and accomplishments? Do we consider their opinions, thoughts, experiences and values? How long does it take to learn the true nature of someone’s character?
I’m sure the answer varies with most people. Sometimes you can judge a person’s character the moment they walk up to you, with others it can take much longer. Character plays a large part in how we interact with each other everyday. From the teenager working at the coffee shop to the seasoned business executive, we interact with people differently based on our perception of their character. You would most likely hesitate doing business with someone who had a bad reputation, and you would probably avoid taking stock tips from a bum sitting on a park bench.
Shouldn’t we take character into account when choosing the next President of the United States?
During 2007 so many names had been tossed into the ring for the Presidential election that there were enough candidates in the race to field an entire baseball game between the Democrats and the Republicans. The number of names was staggering, and the lineups included some major players from both parties. By the end of 2007, this election cycle promised to be quite exciting, if anything because of the sheer number of people involved.
It was no surprise that so many names would be tossed around, as this is the first presidential election since 1952 where neither the incumbent nor the vice-president were the presumptive nominee from their respective party. Everyone was looking for a horse in the race.
The Democrat menagerie included Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, Al Gore, Barack Obama, Bill Richardson, Joseph Biden, Christopher Dodd, Tom Vilsack, Dennis Kucinich, and Mike Gravel. The herd of Republicans included Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney, Fred Thompson, Newt Gingrich, John McCain, Ron Paul, Mike Huckabee, Sam Brownback, Tommy Thompson, Tom Tancredo, Duncan Hunter and Jim Gilmore.
Some of these players never announced they were running in the first place (like Al Gore and Newt Gingrich) and most of the others dropped out before the American people even had a chance to vote for them. It’s safe to say that in the beginning of this election cycle, the names were plentiful but our choices were indeed few.
I’m sure, by now, many of you are familiar with the preamble of the U.S. Constitution. For those of you who may not live in America, or those who simply may not remember it, let’s refresh our memories.
We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
We the people… A simple three word phrase (yes Mr. Biden, just three) that defines the very foundation of the laws and principles our country was founded on. The United States of America is the people. It was founded of the people, by the people, for the people. Without the people, there would be no United States.
Our Constitution is a living, breathing document which sets forth the guidelines by which all of our subsequent laws are based. We know who writes the laws, who passes the laws, and who interprets the laws, but exactly who has standing to uphold our Constitution? Is that a power limited to the courts, our Congress, or our President? Shouldn’t we, the people, have the right to question the constitutionality of a matter? Apparently not.
In 11 days we will be choosing the next President of the United States. Well, we won’t be choosing him, the Electoral College will be choosing him, but they will do so based on our votes from state to state.
Doesn’t it seem like the candidates have been campaigning for four years or so? No, it couldn’t be that long, because four years ago, Barack Obama said he wasn’t qualified to serve as President. He said he was a firm believer that you need to know what you are doing when you apply for a job, and that he would have to start running for President right then and there before ever serving a day in the Senate. I think that’s exactly what he did, don’t you?
I have election fatigue. I am tired of it all. I am tired of turning on the television in the morning and hearing about the polls. I am tired of turning on the television or the radio, only to be inundated with ads. But most of all, I am tired of the political double-speak.
I am tired of hearing one thing and seeing another. I am tired of listening to Barack Obama say something about his plans, only to read those plans myself and learn they are completely different than he said they were in his speech.
I voted today, and I must say, it was quite an enjoyable experience. Early voting is definitely the way to go because it allows you to avoid the long lines on election day. We were in and out in about 10 minutes. The election staff was very courteous, and enjoyed the visit as much as our three sons, who we took with us so they could observe the whole process.
We arrived at around 3:30, so we would avoid the lunch crowd and get back home before the rush hour crowd ever showed up. As we entered the early voting site, there were notices plastered everywhere. Some mentioned the law about campaigning a certain distance from the location, others informed staff of the location for “poll observer” training which sounds like it would be fun, and one such notice was posted on a board for everyone to read and included a statement about Georgia voter identification and United States citizenship requirements. It turns out, after years of fighting over the Georgia Voter I.D. law, there is a new twist that has liberal panties in wad all over again.
Democrats argued for two years that instituting a voter identification law in Georgia would disenfranchise “poor, elderly, and minority” voters. That was b.s. and everyone knew it, but they still fought it. Why wouldn’t you want to validate the election by verifying the identify of the voters? It just didn’t make sense.
Politics can make people do crazy things. Just look at the events of the past year and you have all the evidence you need that you have to be out of your ever-loving mind to seek the office of President of the United States.
Running for office makes you say things you would otherwise never say, it makes you do things you would never dream of doing, and it makes you wish you could remember all the bad things you have done before the press finds out about them.
It all starts with the primaries, where things start out quite civil but turn nasty real quick. Then, before too long, you find yourself praising the very people you were denouncing as satan worshippers just a few months earlier in the campaign.
If you make it past the primaries, things get even more insane. In fact, the best you can do is hold on tight and enjoy the ride.
There’s an old saying that you can’t win if you don’t play. When you’re running for President of the United States you cannot win if you don’t campaign. You must play the game. If you aren’t willing to go out there and give it your all, you’re just not going to win. In fact, if you don’t get your name out there, you will never have a chance, no matter how insane you are.