Democracy: use it or lose it!

IMG_E8963Hold on to your seats, friends, because I am about to get political! That’s right, this post is all about the 2020 elections and I intend to – unashamedly – push anĀ  agenda.

Here it is, my from-the-heart assessment of what’s going on in 2020 and why the only option for absolutely every single American is to get out there and to vote.

Seriously, the actual voting part is so much more important than who is at the top of the ticket and who any of us want to live in the White House for the next four years.

So today, when Rebekah and I joined a thankfully large group of people – Democrats, Republicans, and “others” – in line for early voting, I had my response ready in case anyone asked me who I would be voting for come November: my answer is “America.”

Participation equals accountability:

Now before you give me a hard time for being cheesy I’ll just go a head and defend what I’m thinking. I’m thinking that nothing is better for fostering trust in our system than participation. The closer to one hundred percent participation we get, the closer we will be to trusting all those people we elect to stop their incessant bickering and actually get the job done.

High percentage turnout also facilitates accountability. There is nothing a tyrant likes less than high voter participation, because fewer voters means that many less interested people to answer to.

IMG_8966This is not the same as Winston Churchill’s famous comments on capitalism, but I believe the same sentiment applies: The form of democracy we practice here in the United States is by far the worst, least effective, and unreliable system of government on the planet… with the notable exception of absolutely everything else.

We have an amazing gift here in the USA, a form of governing ourselves that was forged out of great struggle in response to repression and exploitation. If We The People fail to participate today then we are inviting repression and opening ourselves up to exploitation.

Don’t vote like me, just vote!

It is not important that you agree with me regarding any of my choices for any office, what is important is that we all exercise our right to be informed decision makers.

Notice a key word there, “informed.” Along with the right to vote comes the responsibility to understand and to make a well-considered, prayerful choice. Fact is, voting without taking the trouble to become well-informed is one more way to invite repression and open ourselves up to exploitation.

So pay attention, learn to think for yourself, participate in energetic conversations about the candidates, listen to people with opposing points of view, listen respectfully, ask hard questions of the candidates you favor, pay attention, learn how to become a discerning consumer of news, consider many and varied news sources, avoid echo chambers… And – above all – pray.

IMG_E8963Pray for yourself, pray for the candidates, pray for this nation, pray that God will give each one of us wisdom and discernment, pray for tolerance, pray for peace.

Most importantly, be grateful for these United States of America, and do not take this democracy for granted. Freedom: use it or lose it.

In the name of Jesus, the name that is always associated with freedom and justice – Derek

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