About 2 weeks ago, I had the opportunity to visit our country’s capital Washington, DC. It was not my first choice of places to visit as over the years I’ve become very cynical of our country’s political system, however, I’m glad it’s the place I went! My hope is to encourage you by sharing insights from this trip and what it means to be a true American in a democratic society!
My goal is not to offend anyone with this post, but to call out an issue I see among Americans in relationship to our government (I had the same issue) and how I think we can fix it moving forward! Some may get offended and if you do, I highly suggest taking a deep breath and pondering on why exactly you’re getting upset as it may just be you that’s the problem! Just saying! 😛
Politics and how our government operates has always been something I’ve cared about. As soon as I turned 18 I registered to vote and started voting any time I was able from that point on! I wanted to help make a difference in our great country and I truly felt at that moment that my vote mattered! After a couple elections I became dismayed as I felt people that would do great and be great for our country was constantly hidden from the people by the news media, big corporations, and other means. I began to realize that “we the people” didn’t actually vote who we wanted into office, but instead the rich and big corporations controlled who ended up in the White House! At least that was my thought!
Okay, so enough of an introduction! What happened during my trip that caused me to change a lot of my views and fall in love with my Country (The United States of American) again?!? Well, quite a bit actually! Let’s dive in baby and I’ll tell you!
One of the first places I visited when arriving in the Capital was the Lincoln Memorial. As I walked up the steps leading into the famous building we see on our penny, you could almost feel the presence of those that had stood within those corridors from the past. You could almost grasp the understanding of Lincoln’s words that were etched into the walls that screamed for equality and realizing that The United States was more than just about you! The hush as you walked in to where the statue of Lincoln was sitting was mind blowing as you could tell everyone had such respect, admiration and respect for what our country had come through during the Civil War. It was a reminder of an event that shaped this Country with such conviction.
It was also the first moment of the trip that I realized just how many people felt the same way I did at that moment. That truly cared and loved this great country and wanted to see it succeed. Too many times I had focused on all that was going wrong in the country, whether the case or not, and never focused on the great things we’ve accomplished and how I could further help MY country to become an even greater nation.
Did you know that in the 2012 Presidential Election that only 57.5% of Americans that were able to vote actually voted?!? What about these statistics from statisticbrain.com?
Total number of Americans eligible to vote 218,959,000 Total number of Americans registered to vote 146,311,000 Total number of Americans who voted in the 2012 Presidential election 126,144,000
It utterly shocked me when I first saw these statistics and for a moment I felt enraged, until again I remembered I was one of those that didn’t go out in vote in 2012!
The Issue Before Us
Let’s get the cat out of the bag and discuss the real issue with where we are as a nation and the cause of the problems we’re facing! We don’t care and we have become lazy in our responsibility as Americans. Instead of going out and voting or volunteering for candidates we feel would make a difference we simply sit back and complain.
Not only do we complain about things happening in this country we attack each other. We attack other parties, we attack our current president, we attack those that are running for office. We become hateful!
It’s horrible really and it’s something that needs stop immediately! The point of a democracy is for everyone to have a voice, even if it doesn’t agree with yours! If you don’t like this then you don’t belong in a democracy! If the majority of Americans want to pass a law allowing marriage of homosexuals then that’s what SHOULD pass for example!
A democracy isn’t here to help you as an individual, it’s a system designed to aid us as a whole, as a nation! To allow us to shape our country together and not for an individuals needs! This doesn’t mean the system is perfect or that there aren’t things we can and need to change as a country but I think it’s important for us to remember that democracy really isn’t as much about the individual as we like to think!
We have an obligation to register to vote, to get out and support the causes we’d like to see supported and to stop bitching about how a democracy is suppose to work and instead support the system or go out and work on changing the system!
Again, instead of doing these things we’d rather just sit at home binge watch on Netflix and then complain when things don’t go the way we want them to!
We have a responsibility as Americans to get out and vote and this year I plan on once again voting! If my candidate doesn’t win so be it, but at least I’ll do my part and hope for the changes I’d like to see!