Letters to the Editor 10/20/16
God bless Jim Hightower. His article “What 47 cents buys these days,” (Sept. 22, Illinois Times) is right on.
It should be required reading for all past and current Post Office employees.
DECIDE FOR YOURSELF
If you have been following the back and forth between the Republican and Democratic candidates for president and are a little underwhelmed, you’re not alone.
Whether it is deleted emails, pay for play, mistreatment of women, the list goes on and on. The media in general would have you believe that they are your only choices and that voting for anyone else would be throwing your vote away. Umm … no.
There are two other candidates, Jill Stein for the Green Party and Gary Johnson for the Libertarian Party.
Stein is on the ballot in 45 states; Johnson in all 50. Both have a mathematical chance to win. I would suggest that instead of holding your nose and voting for the lesser of two evils, do your homework instead. Both have websites that clearly state their positions and views on the issues. There are videos of both on CNN town halls actually answering questions and not resorting to sound bites and name calling.
If after checking out the alternatives and you decide the Republican or Democrat candidate is the right one for you, vote for them. If not, vote for what or who you believe in. Don’t let someone else decide for you. If everyone who believes that their vote would be wasted would stick to their guns, they would find it wasn’t wasted at all.
For what it’s worth, I’m a registered Republican voting for Gary Johnson.
ONE-SIDEDNESS VS BALANCE
If we can see past the presidential campaigns’ diversionary mud-slinging and charisma (or lack thereof) we realize we all just want to be safe, and that starts with strength in our leadership.
When feeling unsafe, it’s so easy to fearfully react with one-sided anger and therefore respond to issues simplistically and quickly by overpowering others. But is strength really in bulldozing others when resultant extremist groups meet fire with fire then emerge in ever greater numbers (not to mention creation of similar divisive subgroups at home)? Do people feel safe with attackers or allies? So, is reactive, divisive assault truly strength that yields safety?
Do we want a president who is lightning fast to take offense (and lives life on the offensive in general), and who therefore reacts to the world as something for him to win/conquer for fear of being conquered? What happened the last time someone in power with tremendous charisma felt that way? What could happen today, given all the nuclear weapons in play?
Or do we want a president who is emotionally balanced (even when tested to the limit time and again), and who is therefore able to rationally think through complex, interrelated issues and who also has the experience of a lifetime of successfully finding common ground on the national and the world stage?
It takes self-awareness, compassion, temperamental restraint, knowledge, experience and intelligence to understand that everyone, including the whole world, wants to feel safe (and like it or not, we all need each other to survive). This yields the ability to thoughtfully, instead of reactively, balance the many moving parts of this complex world, a world that often hangs in a precariously delicate balance, to arrive at safe solutions. Real solutions often take time, patience and compromise, include a show of force only when necessary, and are comprised of so much more than we’re privy to for national security reasons.