Issues On My Mind
|by Mary Wakefield Buxton|
Here are suggested guidelines: skip the personal attacks, mudslinging and stick to the issues. I have my preferred candidates but I won’t tear down another candidate in order to build up my own. Negative remarks are not respectful to our noble candidates and are, in fact, most demeaning to those who make them.
Like many voters, I have issues on my mind. Whoever is elected will face one of the most difficult terms in office in history. Let’s have some compassion and respect for those who offer themselves as candidates for office in order that we have choices.
We are at a huge crossroads in history. There are big differences between candidates and political philosophies. Voters must think carefully what direction they want to take the nation.
The issues are as profound as working through solutions will be. Here are some of my personal concerns that I will be reflecting on over the last two weeks of the campaign:
- Defend The Nation: 9-11 still reverberates in my mind. In pre-9-11 days I was more liberal than I am today. Since then, I have become more conservative. I can still see those big jets laden with American blood and fuel aimed full speed for the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Our new leaders must be strong to ensure this nation never experiences such infamy again. Any weakness, real or perceived, will only attract more attacks from our enemies in the homeland.
- Stabilize The Economy: There are normal ups and downs in a free market economy and citizens expect them, but the last month has seen much turbulence because of improper bank loans that began at Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae and spread throughout the economy. Reforms and more Congressional oversight are necessary to ensure that this situation won’t happen again. Our leaders must find answers to re-establishing consumer confidence and the first step is for our leaders to take responsibility for mistakes that were made.
- Live Within Our Means: Our grandparents knew that they had to live on a budget. But somehow along the way it became fashionable to use extended credit. This behavior has spread like wildfire across the nation. We are all guilty of living beyond our means. Government and citizens must get out of debt first and then learn how to stick to a budget.
- Solve The Energy Crisis: Why are we still almost totally dependent on foreign nations for most of our energy needs? I want leadership that will develop all forms of energy available to us including: nuclear, off-shore and on-shore drilling for oil, the use of clean coal, and even building windmill corridors just as they use in the Baltic Sea nations.
- Rehaul Social Security And Medicare: Let’s not wait for another meltdown crisis before we take action. Let’s do it now. Why has Congress dragged its feet on this problem for years?
- Stop Partisan Bickering: Americans are fed up with constant party wrangling from various political party leaders in Congress who do nothing to solve our problems, but fight with each other. We, the people do not elect representatives to go to Washington and dig in on polarized Republican or Democratic positions that result in a do-nothing Congress. We elect them to solve problems, come together with goodwill toward each other, and write the legislation that is needed. Both Democrats and Republicans have good ideas. Solutions have to come from both sides of the aisles. Stop the “party think” mentality and the constant finger pointing and form the “American Team.” Do what the rest of us have to do on a daily basis—compromise and do the job!
- Balance Freedom With Responsibility: Freedom is not the right to scream “fire” in a crowded theater, nor the right to make millions on Wall Street while taking your corporation down, nor the right to shoot your neighbor, rob a bank, shop lift, use illegal drugs, spread gossip, or behave badly against one’s neighbor. Freedom is the right to work hard in this world, be responsible for oneself, and enjoy the pursuit of happiness within a set of rules bound by civilization. Learning the proper balance is what separates man from beast.
- Universal Concerns: Can women in Third World nations achieve equal opportunities? Can women in the West keep equal rights against those cultures determined to take them away? Can America continue as a beacon of hope for all who yearn for individual freedom? Can we end genocide, poverty, starvation, disease, pollution and war?
Those who win in this coming election, whether as president or congressman, will surely have their hands full. Great challenges lie ahead. May future leaders be aptly inspired. ©2008