Election day is tomorrow and I’m more than excited. Not only will I and the American people get to chart the course of our country as dictated by our amazing Constitution after most of our ancestors fought for us to have these rights (immigrant nation we are); I’m also thrilled the thousand cold calls from both parties will stop (I swear I heard from every politician on the planet last night. Why is this not harassment?) However, with all my excitement, I am very measured in my expectations of my fellow generation Xters and the “hashtag” generation taking the opportunity to do what’s right, what’s their right and crucial to them being able to continue the lifestyle they are enjoying now.
Fun facts, after the 2010 elections that gave us our first black president in President Barack Obama, “The 111th Congress made more laws affecting more Americans since the ‘ Great Society’ Legislation of the 1960s.” As I am not a facts and figures person for the purposes of my blog, a link to some wonderful information has been provided but to name a few things: healthcare, Wall Street reform, an end to DADT, infrastructure, and yes tax cuts (Democrats do it too). After all these wonderful things, the 2012 midterms arrived and no one else did. Democrats lost the House and the 112th Congress is the worst we have ever had. Don’t believe me? Here is a wonderful second link to the do nothing Congress we get to enjoy now. I have always felt that while the presidential elections are important, the midterms are where it’s at. The Congress writes the laws. They affect our day-to-day lives and how our golden years might be enjoyed (social security anyone). So if you really want the best America we continue to tell the world we are, get up and don’t expect someone else to pick up your slack.
After a rousing conversation with two of my best friends, I realized what I previously felt about my purpose on the planet was kind of a problem. With the skeletons fighting for room in my closet, I saw myself as the facilitator to the next Buddha or Martin Luther King Jr. I mean who truly was going to follow me? And I don’t have any patience to play nice on a CNN or Fox News panel. TMZ would be able to fill its entire cycle with me, but my besties had the best question to ask, ” Are you okay with Honorable Mention?”
We live in a society where if you participate you get a trophy. I don’t personally like competition for myself. I live vicariously through the Miami Heat, Williams sisters, and whichever MMA fighter looks sexier at the time. I watch action movies and the like so the anger and aggression my meditation and Buddhist studies help to control, still gets fed and I can remain on my path. I won’t be the one lashing out or hurting feelings. This is not me and I see no need for me to indulge in those activities. I don’t have to be first, I just have to be strong in myself and know my position is cultivating the joy I want in myself and the world. But with all that, I can’t use my blog only, my small group conversation, and my twenty Facebook and Twits only to affect change. I have yet to miss my civic duty. I was eighteen in college and received a phone call from my father. He picked me up from the dorms and handed me the paper. ” Read this and choose,” he said and there was a list of all the candidates I hadn’t even heard of and didn’t care about at the time. That moment is ingrained in me and I have nor will I miss an election.
This is not a game. This is our country and our future. We must stop thinking our parents will clean up behind us, as well as passing the buck to the other’s that didn’t get sleep through civics class (which most still have done away with). Our rights only get taken away when we don’t use them and right now, more and more rights are being demolished and it’s in our power to stop it.