Election Reflections

I have a super-duper intolerance with folks who refuse to make informed decisions. Really. The one thing that ticks me off more than anything is when people form opinions, make declarations, and take stances based on emotion or peer pressure, without research, fact-checking, or prayerful deliberation.

The election is over. I can’t help but think that ON BOTH SIDES of the camp (two major political parties), persons simply made a decision for a candidate because:

I’ve always voted (Democrat or Republican); my mom (or dad or husband or wife) told me to; my Sunday school teacher said Obama is the anti-Christ (yes… I really have heard this one said in all sincerity); Sarah Palin is an idiot; Sarah Palin is a Christian; at least the Republicans are pro-life; at least Obama is a Christian, and so on and so on.

Today I heard an interesting news report from a Christian perspective about how so-called evangelical, pro-life, pro-gun, Christian voters (many of them from the Bob Jones University group) in South Carolina voted for an extremely liberal, pro-abortion, anti-gun candidate because he was the Republican candidate for congress. Yes–the Democratic candidate was the one more closely aligned with their values and concerns. But they checked their brains at the door and voted party-line. The Democratic party even endorsed the Republican candidate (NOT the Democratic candidate). Isn’t it pitiful that “we” US citizens are so gullible, so stupid, so uneducated that we can’t even articulate and defend our so-called preferences and values. We are hard-pressed to live out the things that we SAY are the MOST IMPORTANT and NEAR AND DEAR to our hearts. We really don’t even have a clue.

This evening, I heard another pitiful example on the Glenn Beck radio show. He was taking callers to complete a “trivia quiz.” He asked them things like, “What position is Hillary Clinton being considered for?” “What will Joe Biden do on January 20th when he’s no longer a Senator?” “Can you name one of the rights included in the Bill of Rights?” “Who is the Vice-President-Elect?” NO ONE could answer 100%. On the Bill of Rights question, one person said, “the right to remain silent.” Another said that John McCain was the Vice-President-Elect. The majority of the callers I heard said they voted in the election; all said they voted for Obama. Certainly, I believe that they all have the RIGHT to vote. But, people, with RIGHTS come RESPONSIBILITIES!

I am scared and dismayed and sad and mad at all these people and their abdication of initiative, education, and involvement.

What WOULD our country look like, feel like, function like, love like if our people–regardless of the votes they cast–staked a claim in their citizenship and simply participated wholeheartedly in the process? Will we ever recover from our apathy or simply drown in it as we choke on our self-imposed ignorance?