Beginning October 21, this blog, Rain Trueax's Rainy Day Thoughts, will have a co-author-- painter and long-time friend, Diane Widler Wenzel. We have been sharing, encouraging, and discussing life for over 50 years. We don't always agree... I think this will be fun trip for us both. New posts will be on Saturdays and otherwise randomly as something of interest happens.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Freedom

Across the United States, in two days people will be voting (some, with vote-by-mail, like Oregon or absentee ballots, already have). We will mark our ballots with the belief that it makes a difference, that we owe it to those who have sacrified to make it possible for us to live in a country that has this right.

My month of only writing about politics, politicians and policies ends with this blog. To those, who support the Republican message and President Bush, I have probably seemed pretty hard on him and those who support him. I understand the desire to think the best of our country, of the leadership that governs it. I wish I could feel that way about this current administration, but what I have seen them do seems a threat to what I value most.

Where people who support Bush must see a good man, I have seen increasing corruption, intellectual laziness, a desire to take our freedoms to gain power at any cost.

Our nation is governed by majority vote, but that doesn't make the decisions of the majority to be correct ones. We know at one time a majority thought slavery was okay. In another era it was all right to have children working in factories. Yet another time justified abuse of Native Americans and a confiscation of their lands-- even those with signed treaties.

Majority doesn't guarantee anything in a mob or in a country. It does mean they won. Right now winning seems to be all some care about, but some of those caught up in a desire for victory can lost track of the price they are paying for that victory.

I ask for those of you who are gung ho on the Republican party, please look at what this president has done, is doing, and what the people who are behind him want. For a moment, forget your dislike of Clinton. Don't go just by what Bush says, look at his actions; and when you go to the polls, be sure you have really thought through where we are heading if we stay on this path.

It's worth all of us taking some time to consider how much is security worth? It's hard to believe this nation which was founded by pilgrims, emigrants and pioneers, who braved the unknown and faced hardships most of us can't even imagine, would be so fearful a few generations later that we wouldn't mind throwing away freedoms that others fought so hard to gain.

Hopefully when we vote, we all vote our conscience, not our pocketbook. I worry when we hear from those who justify torture in the name of personal safety. I don't understand those who are willing to throw away their right to a trial based totally on faith in the Bush people or their hope that Republicans are godly and will keep them safe.

I hope we all keep in mind the goals on which this country was founded. We haven't always lived up to them, but they are grand goals. This is such a beautiful land, with a proud dream behind it. We can have that but not without cost. It has never come without cost.

Devil's Tower, Wyoming was not chosen because I think Bush is the devil. It was because freedom and good things are not free. They require vigilance and courage to hold onto them because there is always someone willing to take them away. This huge chunk of rock seemed like a good reminder of the dream with which our nation began.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. -- That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."

from the Declaration of Independence. Some might even see those words as Revolutionary today!

13 comments:

Winston said...

Beautifully done, Rain. As has been this entire series of yours on politics, etc. You say it is not your bag and that this is the last such post, but you do it so well, so rationally and above board without getting vicious. Me, I tend to jump into the fray, burning and slashing and calling names. I've never been like that before, so maybe it is just because I have learned over the past 6 years that Bush devotees don't listen to reason, don't want to hear the truth, don't want to see the light. So maybe if I just yell louder...

I hope that when we are again facing important issues and elections you will let your voice ring out across the land once more. Maybe you should even have a second blog just for your voice of political reason. Think about it...

Dick said...

Ours is without a doubt the best country to ever have evolved but as you say it does take some work to keep it that way. One thing the last few years has taught me is that I feel we are better off if we don't allow the Executive Branch, Senate and House to all be controlled by the same political party. We have no vote this time on the Executive Branch so the only possible way to change the status of government is to elect members of the Senate and House who are of the oposite party. That is the way I will vote in this election but not necessarily because I really like those candidates better.

Anonymous said...

I truly value my right to vote and have already sent in my absentee ballot. It concerns me that so many repeatedly refuse to vote, usually claiming they did not like the choices, but have no problem complaining when they do not like the election results.....Echo

robin andrea said...

These posts took a lot of work and deep thinking on tough subjects. You did a great job, and I admire you for sticking with it.

Our ballots have been mailed in. Now it's just nailbiting time. I wish our whole country good luck.

Ingineer66 said...

Excellant post Rain. I had to memorize that passage from the Declaration in my right wing parochial school. You are correct that the way things are going the ruling class is going to keep grabbing power until us common folk cant take it any more. I am going to vote on Tuesday. I have never done absentee because it feels more real to go down and see the old people and the students that volunteer and cast my vote in person. I am really only interested in the state and local races. I know that my democratic senator will carry the urban and coastal counties and win easily and my republican congressman who has no real competition from the dems will also win easily.

Mary Lou said...

I am filling out my absentee ballot this afternoon. I use it because I did not want to give up my Right to vote in Washington when I moved to Alaska and Nevada and Virginia and Calif. And Now it is just easier to sit down with a cup of tea and the voters pamphlet and study the issue and then vote and mail it off.

I am voting a split ticket. I think that our Democratic Senator has done a fine job, and I dont want the democratic member for sheriff! I vote for the person, not the party.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Great Great Post, Rain...A truly inspired finish to your month long wonderful posts on politics!
I have already voted by Absentee Ballot, a wonderful "right" that I am thrilled to be able to take advantage of in these terribly troubled times.

Maya's Granny said...

You write these so well. It is obvious that you have given it a lot of thought and really believe what you are writing. I have enjoyed your political posts and would love to read more if you ever get to where you want to write more.

Sandy said...

You have done such a great job writing on the upcoming election. Not an easy topic to "discuss" at all but you have done it! I wish you all luck as the election nears although I have to say I was in Seattle for a conference this past week/weekend and there were many many people who did not know when election day was. How very strange that I did lol.

Rain said...

Thank you all for your encouraging words.

That was amazing, Sandy but not surprising. Too many Americans don't vote with assorted excuses-- none of which are valid in my mind. Some suggest having a lottery and voters could win money. That was disgusting to me as who would those voters then be? How much thought would they put into their votes? Some countries, like Australia, have fines for not voting. I can see that logic but it also means you get people voting who didn't care at all and maybe vote for disastrous choices since they didn't want to be there. I don't know what the answer is as I grew up knowing you vote. My kids grew up likewise. To me, it's our duty as citizens and as Echo said, if you don't, you have no right to complain.

Although whatever happens tomorrow, I don't plan to lament or gloat. We vote and then put it behind us until the next time-- hopefully.

Parapluie said...

These political posts have been wonderful for me to read because I agree. Alco agree for a well deserved rest because after the election there isn't anything we can say to make a change in the outcome. So until there are more elections do what you enjoy.

Ingineer66 said...

True if you are too stupid to know when election day is then we dont want you to vote. I say don't vote, that will make my vote have that much more power. Just kidding.

iza said...

Rain, I love that picture and great post too.


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