|The Most Critical Election Until The Next One|
|Opinion - Global Warning|
|Lisa Jain Thompson|
|Sunday, 20 November 2011 09:00|
Fairfax, VA, USA. The American Presidential Election is twelve months off, four years after the last one, four years before the next one. At this point in time, as an independent moderate, I have no idea for which candidate I might vote.
But I will vote. I will make a choice, however distasteful, between two or three grievously flawed choices. I always do. I always will.
If I found a George Washington or an Abraham Lincoln in the crash site called American politics, I would vote for him. And then complain when he made decisions not exactly conforming to my political and social desires. After all, it is the American way: vote the old, incompetent bastards out, install the new ones as their replacements. Gridlock democracy at its best.
For a sobering reminder of what is at stake, consider what George Washington had to say upon his departure from public life.
It was an open some would say love letter to the people of America.
Farewell Address. George Washington (1796).
Download PDFWhen I was four and eight, I supported Dwight Eisenhower, Jack Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson when I was slightly older. I supported Bobby Kennedy in 1968 before I was old enough to vote and worked in the Last Crusade until an assassin’s bullets crashed our world around us. Since then, I have voted for a variety of party candidates from both parties: Humphrey, McGovern, Carter, Reagan, Mondale, George Bush, Clinton, Clinton, Gore, Kerry, and McCain. I deeply regret a few of my choices who will remain nameless to protect the innocent.
The United States presidential election of 1789 was the first presidential election in the United States of America, only taking place following the ratification of the United States Constitution in 1788. We elected George Washington as President with John Adams as Vice-President. George Washington was elected unanimously. There was no formal nomination process. The framers of the Constitution had presumed that Washington would be the first president, and once he agreed to come out of retirement to accept the office, there was no opposition to him. Individual states chose their electors, who voted all together for Washington when they met.
In 1789, a total of 38,818 votes were cast, all for Mr. Washington. That is probably the last time Americans, as we were beginning to call ourselves, unanimously agreed on anything other than in 1792 when Mr. Washington was unanimously re-elected with only 13,332 votes. Well over 25,000 Americans chose not to vote, a persistent pattern that exist to this day.
We normally don’t vote much more often than we vote for anyone.
The Southern Slave States attempted to leave the Union rather than live under a President, Abraham Lincoln, who publicly denounced slavery as immoral. We fought a bloody war to beat slave-owning out of our country. Having seen Lincoln re-elected and having lost the war, southerners, sympathetic with the goals of slave owning traitors, chose assassination as their political instrument of choice. A coward’s ignoble choice for those who did not trust the workings of Democracy and who would not wait until the next election.
American presidential timber leaves little left to harvest. The best of our current set of presidential choices is not readily apparent. There is not a Washington or Lincoln among them. There isn’t even a Jack Kennedy or Dwight Eisenhower and certainly no Roosevelt or Truman. The old growth is gone and what is left is green and unsuited for the quick and sturdy reconstruction of our democratic house.
We are Americans, one and all, living under our Constitution. English, Native Americans, Africans, Germans, Irish, French, Asians, Italians, Hispanics and Cubans, male and female, men and women, we are all citizens of the United States. The list continues to grow: we are the People of these United States, Americans. To this we have pledged to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.
So we approach still another election with our nation in turmoil. Some openly decry our democracy, saying it is but tool of capitalists and the wealthy as they attempt to get elected by the self-same process they now denounce. Others loudly say we must ignore the poor who will always be with us and tear down the structures of two hundred and thirty years of self-government.
We are the oldest continuous form of government of this planet. Since we gave birth to America with our blood, others have overthrown their kings, established democracies and state nationalism, waged wars of aggression against us, succumbed to petty dictators and religious fanatics.
We remain, The People of the United States. We are America not our political representatives, not our presidents, not our bosses or landlords, political activists or religious spokespersons. And certainly not the Political Left or Right. We are neither Tea Party nor Occupy Wall Street.
We, the vast democratic majority, must leave our soft couches and flashy videos and take our country back from both extremes. They are interlopers in our democratic system and not true Americans. Their hearts are not in our America.
We must rise up and take control once again of our political process. As President Lincoln said at his Second Inaugural, let us strive to finish the work we are in. We must bind up our nation’s wounds and bring our Democracy back from the brink of disaster. Working together, we, the People of the United States, shall have a new birth of freedom.
Or we shall surely perish from this earth
|Last Updated on Monday, 21 November 2011 09:38|