Saturday, September 13, 2008

Mud Slinging and the Political Climate

This probably rambles...I'm pregnant and chasing a 2 year old while I am writing it, so please accept my apologies in advance. This blog is about no one in particular, just things I have observed in the last few months. If you are offended and believe that it is about you, then please accept my apologies for that as well.

I generally don't get involved in political discussions. More than one friendship has ended over a political debate and it's not worth it to me to lose friends over a difference in opinion. That being said, most people know how I feel about certain issues and either don't challenge my beliefs or we have reached a point where we agree to disagree and I feel like I show the same courtesy to them. And yes, I have made my Presidential choice.

This being an election year, I have read numerous bulletins and read even more blogs touting the wonders of one's chosen candidate and the atrocities of "the other guy". I have even read such ridiculous statements that would go so far as to deem one racist/sexist/ageist if they aren't voting for Obama and the same if they aren't voting for McCain. I am neither racist, sexist, or ageist. I make my choices based on my personal feelings concerning issues that matter to me both as a mother, a woman, and an American. I don't vote party--I vote person. Those fully entrenched in the belief systems of a particular party might consider that to be flippant and they are certainly entitled to that opinion. I don't really care. Just don't call me a bad American because I don't agree with you.

I have had family and friends verbally attacked for making one choice or another. My question is why. Why do we feel the need to attack another's choice? If you care enough to stand up and have an opinion, then you should have enough respect to allow someone else to stand up and have one too. A compromise doesn't have to occur, but mutual respect for your fellow man should prevail. And honestly, if you are old enough to vote, then you should be old enough to not throw a temper tantrum because someone doesn't agree with you.

The great thing about living in this country is that we are entitled to all of that. It's a little thing called democracy. We are all free to make a choice for our leaders, and hopefully your choice is informed and based on the issues, but even at that, it doesn't have to be. You could vote McCain because you don't like the ties Obama chooses and vice versa and that's your choice to make and you should be able to make that choice free of persecution for your beliefs.

Short blog long, you aren't going to convince me to change my opinions no matter how many blogs and bulletins you post and no matter how many emails you send telling me how wrong I am. You will also garner no points for your chosen candidate by going on a tirade and attacking what I believe in. And that whole "my candidate has never done anything wrong and yours is the epitome of poor decision making"? You guessed it. I'm not buying into that either.

We are currently in perhaps the most exciting political race in the history of this country and people are involved more so than in any recent time that I can recall. Americans are invested in their very own political process and it's awesome to watch! Let that be the focus and keep the mud slinging for those who get paid to do it.

Peace and Love,

Paying It Forward, Complacency, Et Cetera...

(I am trying to consolidate my blogs so that I can just have one. This is a blog I posted on September 13, 2008.)

The last few days, I have been in a total funk. I feel like I'm trying to be the best mom/wife/daughter/friend that I can be and yet, I don't feel like I'm getting anything back. I don't mean that everyone in my life is taking advantage of my kindness, I just don't feel the sense of satisfaction that I should be feeling. I am a born again Christian and truly believe that my reward is in Heaven, but sometimes I want to feel just a little bit of a reward here on earth. Selfish? Perhaps, but I'm only human and this human can not live by good deeds alone, but by a little appreciation here and there.
I was pondering this last night (while sitting in my perpetual puddle of pregnant tears) and realized that this doesn't just happen to me. I'm sure most people feel unappreciated at some point and some more than others. And usually, it's the people closest to us that make us feel this way. Complacency is such a bad thing. We grow so used to people doing things for us out of the kindness of their heart that we begin to look upon these things as their sense of duty. The terrible thing is...I'm guilty of it too. I'm guilty of taking the little things for granted, even though I generally make a conscious effort to be appreciative. I cringe to think that perhaps I have made those I love feel like I didn't appreciate the things they have done for me.
I believe in the Ethic of Reciprocity (aka The Golden Rule). And I believe that if you pay it forward, you get it back. So, if you are in my life, and I have made you feel unappreciated, thank you. Thank you for the things you've done, even if you did it out of a sense of duty. Thank you for putting yourself out there, even when it was terribly inconvenient to do so. Thank you for being there, with your pom-poms ready and your shoulders to cry on, even if I didn't use them. Sometimes just knowing they are there is enough. Thanks for your advice, even when I didn't really want it. Thanks for valuing my opinion enough to ask for it and enough to not be angry when I gave it and it wasn't asked for. Thanks for making me a better person.

Paying It Forward,