Last I checked we considered ourselves to be world leaders of democracy yet our behavior during this election cycle clearly demonstrates our capacity to trample upon the very philosophy that we boast.
We should be ashamed of ourselves, each and every one of us. We are no longer a nation that exemplifies the democratic spirit.
A quick look at the headlines, just days before our election, tells the story: From AlterNet.org – “Major Retailer Urges Workers To Take ‘Civics Course’ With Anti-Obama Content.” Mother Jones – “Voter Suppression Explained.” ABC News –“ South Florida Voters Waiting Four Hours to Vote Early.” There are endless examples. In fact, Fox news is having a cow over the fact that many independent organizations have asked for the O.S.C.E. (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, we are a member) to oversee our election in some areas. Yet when one considers the massive efforts to swing the vote to one particular side, it’s understandable that many would feel their voting rights are being threatened and thus choose to have monitors in place so as to provide some security.
It’s a hit to our pride though, isn’t it? Having OUR election monitored by outside groups is embarrassing for us. We were always the one country who touted the benefits of our democratic process to the world, always claiming to be the beacon of fair and civil government. Instead, we deign to lower ourselves to groveling for power like some third world country and by doing so we inflict the need to have our elections audited as well. W.T.F.
This is not the Nation we were taught to revere and respect. This is not the Nation I want to hand down to my children and their children. This is not a Nation to be proud of at the moment. We are better than this.
There is hope though. We can change. The most important step is to become involved and demand fair elections. To do nothing, as we have done so far, is to allow our Nation’s slow death.
We must agitate our lawmakers to pass an amendment against Citizens United, ensuring that our elections cannot be purchased. We can demand that our votes be tallied by physical means. No computers. Zero. Zilch. None. – too easy to tamper with and no physical proof of our vote, this should be a no brainer. It may be more expensive to go the paper route, but we should be willing to incur the cost for the sake of a fair and correct ballot count. We should make election day a national holiday to eliminate long poll lines and ensure that each citizen has the ability to vote, this also has the added benefit of giving our process the respect it deserves.
We need to hold our bosses and our pastors accountable, not just for breaking the law and swaying their people to vote in one single direction, but for instilling fear into their people if they don’t. These actions are much more reminiscent of boss politics and tyrannical priests than they are of a fair and democratic process. They smell of desperation. They stink of complete disregard of our founding principles. They reek of selfishness.
To Mr.’s Koch, Koch, Adelson and ilk, you are to be held accountable as well. Where in your civics class did you learn that it was morally okay to buy an election? When, exactly, did you make the conscious decision to abandon fair political processes for your own personal gain? Do you even care that you’ve brought the greatest Nation in the world to the brink of disarray thanks to your selfish agenda?
It is apparent that many of us do care about our Nation though or passions wouldn’t be running so high this election. That is why we must rally together to ensure its success and prosperity by protecting our voting process. We must make our voices heard to our legislators so that we can effect change. We must turn our shame and hurt pride into righteous anger over losing our integrity. We must use that energy to gain it back.
We must make it our goal to dissolve the need for election monitors by becoming a Nation once again that exemplifies the democratic spirit.