The next US presidential election happens in just over two weeks from this posting. It feels like an understatement to say that this is a big deal.
Of course, it is a big deal.
To be clear, I am not a fan of our current president. He is a misogynistic, racist, sexist, and homophobic businessman who only cares about his self-interests. His handling of the Coronavirus pandemic has been full of misleading (and often misguided) information and a complete lack of empathy. Over 200,000 people have now died in the US.
Now that I got that out of the way, it goes without saying that people have a right to choose whomever they want for president. It is actually more important that people vote, regardless of who they vote for. In a democracy in which a majority of the people exercise their power to vote, there is more ownership and interest in the future of the country. This is always a good thing.
With all of this in mind, I wanted to present a simple idea.
Early voting is now in full swing across the country. People can either do so in person at local voting sites or by absentee ballots through the mail. Voting on election day will also be happening on Nov. 3. While it is absolutely important to exercise your right to vote, it is also worthwhile to think about why you are voting.
Personally, it seems easier to make a decision based entirely upon yourself and your own singular needs. For example, you could say . . .
“Sure, I have food on the table and a stable home. I’m not poor and destitute. Let’s keep everything the same and keep the current guy in office.”
This is certainly a perfectly reasonable line of thinking, but what if, for example, you shifted your perspective and thought about your beloved, ailing, and elderly grandmother? What if you considered her needs and situation?
Her affordable healthcare, as she grapples with pre-existing conditions, is supported by Obamacare. How will your vote affect this delicate balance?
Let’s say someone you deeply love and admire in your family is LGBT.
Which candidate is likely to push for a reversal of gay marriage as well as revoke equal protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and/or gender identity?
Let’s say your sister suddenly has Coronavirus. Which leader and administration would be more competent in getting sick patients the support that they and their caregivers need?
These can be real-world scenarios that are happening in communities all across the country.
As you make your plans to vote, please think about who your vote will protect beyond just yourself. I would vote differently if the life and livelihood of someone I loved would be destroyed by the outcome of the election. Think about the future of your children, your parents, brothers, sisters, best friends, and your spouse. If the wellbeing of someone I loved was on the line, I would move mountains to make it right.
So, just think about it. Vote on behalf of someone you love and someone you want to protect.
When you do this, you vote with compassion. It becomes an act of love and kindness toward someone you care for. This makes all the difference in the world.