Sunday, September 2, 2012

Politics 101

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything and as we gear up for this upcoming presidential election, I’m finding myself more and more concerned about the personal attacks that people are making on one another just because they have different political viewpoints. These are my personal observations (mainly from posts on Facebook by acquaintances, friends, friends of acquaintances and friends of friends). I will not specifically name people; if you feel you fit into these categories, so be it. I hope we will continue to remain friends or acquaintances going forward, despite the fact that I might have differing viewpoints from you.

Why is it that all Republicans are lumped together as the Tea Party? Maybe I’ve missed something over the past few years, but when did the Tea Party become an officially recognized party? There are Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Libertarians, etc., but I must have missed the announcement that the Tea Party had become an officially designated party. From my observation, there appear to be a group of Republicans who may have moved more to the right and are aligning themselves with the Tea Party Movement (who knows, there might be some Independents in this group as well), but it is a MOVEMENT, not a sanctioned party.

Why is it that many liberals feel that some conservatives do not care for their fellow Americans? I will preface this observation by saying that in my circle of acquaintances and friends, many more are of the conservative persuasion. In this circle, I am amazed by the generosity of these people – with their time, with their money, with their ideas. And most of them are very humble with this generosity. They don’t brag about it – they just do it. There are many liberals in my circle who I could say the same thing about – they are humble and generous as well. There are issues that are important to both sides of the political spectrum – neither party has all the right answers. Somehow, we need to figure out a way to work together for a common goal and stop the blaming game.

It saddens me that so much money is spent on these political campaigns, funded by super PACS (and these super PACS are on both sides of the political spectrum). Just think what could be accomplished if these millions and millions of dollars could be spent to help those in real need of help (or donated to organizations that could help those in need). Something has to change going forward to make this money more accessible to those truly in need.

Why is it when people express their beliefs (political or religious) that they are crucified because their beliefs differ from others? I have an acquaintance whose political persuasion is opposite from mine. This person is a liberal, as are most of the people who make comments on this person’s Facebook page. From time to time there would be comments made by another person (who I believe is a conservative). Obviously their viewpoints were totally opposite from each other. Every time the conservative made an observation, the people who responded called this person horrible names, made fun of this person because of said conservative viewpoint, and basically ostracized this person. Just because this person had another viewpoint was no reason for the attacks to their character. Everyone has a different belief system and they are entitled to that belief system. That is what makes this nation so inspiring. Yet, when we express our beliefs, there is ridicule. Why can’t we just accept the beliefs of others and move forward. If you don’t agree with a friend’s beliefs, that’s okay. We need to be accepting of our differences and learn to embrace our friends regardless. We all have the freedom of choice to believe what we want to believe, accept what we want to accept and treat everyone equally. To make generalities about people based on their religious or political beliefs is wrong and sometimes very hurtful.

Why is it that whenever something is written about the candidates running for president, that so many people accept what they read as the gospel truth? What ever happened to checking out the facts for yourself instead of just relying on what the “news media” is reporting about each candidate? All comments by both parties are not 100% accurate, yet people will read these comments and observations as if they have been thoroughly documented and are the truth. Come on people – use your brains and seek out the facts for yourself – don’t rely on the “talking heads” to form your opinions. All liberals and conservatives aren’t bad people – they just have differing opinions that should be respected. We need to move away from the “gotcha mentality.”

We have a little over two months before the presidential election is held. We all have differing opinions of what is going on. Please be mindful of these differences and respectful of the people who hold these different viewpoints. It doesn’t do any good to mock someone whose opinions differ from you. Hopefully when the election is over, no matter who wins, we can still remain acquaintances and friends.