I have been wrestling with this post for a few weeks now as Wyclef Jean’s song, If I were president, repeats in the back ground. I originally wrote this post several months ago but kept revisiting and reworking it because I still had lingering feelings. The election is going full steam and with the candidate pool dwindling down, there is a reason for me to publish this post. It appears that there is a struggle in voters where are choices are becoming a debate between the lesser evil. No candidate is perfect; however, there has to be an understanding that we are all one people.
The asleep ration of church and state is something that I have referenced a great deal lately. Living in a state that has taken a very public opposition to the marriage equality laws that have been passed are at the forefront of the upcoming presidential election.
There is always a great deal of discussion about issues, beliefs, and values whenever we near a presidential election. For as long as I can remember it has been impressed upon me that I should vote because we went through so much to gain this right. My parents, family members and others in my community always said the voice of a single vote makes a difference, and yet I thought to my self-does it really. Continually we see corrupt politicians, police brutality, and school shooting all the while our law makers argue over social issue or issues between church and state. I stand by my belief in those that the act of voting is a social contract saying that by actively participating in the process of electing government officials you agree to make an informed decision. A decision that is made by actively investigating the issue, beliefs, and values of the candidates and issuing a state me that I believe what they stand for. While I do not have a passion or interest for voting or the political landscape the laws that are enacted will shape the societal view of everyday life.
You ask me how I feel about the up coming election and who I think will win and my response is I do not know. Many assume that because I am a middle-class citizen and come from a middle-class background that I would vote democrat. I am not a blind follower of social uniformity and while I understand the differences between the parties I believe that each presents a different reality. I can assuredly tell you that based on the information, current public opinion, and state of our country; what I have seen is a cry out for a definite change in leadership one that would come from the republican party but other than that I do not know. The usual follow up is why do you think that. I say for several reasons:
1. Democrats won the 2008 wand 2012 elections both previous times based on minority and women turn out. With everything that has occurred from the outcry of injustice in our judicial system by minorities and the growing cries of women for fairness in the work place I hear from my peers they are not voting.
2. Second the issues are far more slanted to an astounding call for more conservatism. Many states have adopted equality for same-sex marriages with the far right saying that this violates their religious freedoms.
while these are just two reasons that I see for this outcome. Politics, law, and religion are topics of discussion that founded this country and while we do not have an overarching religion there is a notion that America is undeniably tied to the Christian faith. I understand that there is an inner human need to believe in something, even if that is nothing at all but the use of this belief to abandon rational thought for blanket persecution is enraging. The American double standard is not just in politics, law, and religion it permeates all aspects of our lives.
I am all for religious freedoms. The last time I checked this country was founded in such a manner that a national religion was not imposed on its citizens and yet we try to do so. There is a division between church and state, so why is marriage not treated the same way. This is a binding legal document. I understand the religious significance; however, at its core, it is a contractual obligation between two parties regardless of race or gender. I also understand that most view this as a job of the church and as such believe that this should be maintained as such even going so far as to use this as a reason to ostracize same-sex marriage. There are two things occurring any time a ban on same-sex marriage is passed the state is taking it’s on conservative prejudicial religious believes and using them as a basis to execute a law. I am not trying to down play the right to believe that if you are a same-sex couple you are going to hell as this is well in your right to religious beliefs; however, it is well in there right as US citizens to be lawfully recognized as partners in the eyes of the law. Have an equal treatment in business establishments and be treated fairly as human beings. This has nothing to do with you worship on Sunday or how you interact as these are still people.
Though the political landscape is on the precipitous of change that should not change the fact that we are all human. People that deserve the same respect and freedoms that the law allows. I implore law makers to reserve your religious bias for Sunday church service and/or the appropriate protest, however, endeavor to keep the separation between church and state as one encroaches on the other people loose freedom.
Also published on Medium.