I am a Christian. I believe that there is a God and I know this because of the miraculous ways He works in my life, and the lives of others. I know some people believe that science alone is to blame for the beautiful (and not so beautiful) phenomenons of this world, but I believe it is all due to the hand of our Creator. I don’t expect everyone to believe what I believe, and I totally get how people can be Buddhist, Agnostic, Jewish, Hindu, even Atheist! That is the beautiful thing about living in the United States. If you choose to believe that there is no real way of knowing about a higher power or the existence of a God, then you can! It’s called being agnostic, and that is the stance I have chosen when dealing with political matters.
There are some political issues that I feel strongly about, and some that I am indifferent on. Some decisions made by our President and Presidents past confuse me, and some I wholeheartedly agree with. Ultimately what I have decided is that there is no way for us, as Americans, to really know why the President makes certain decisions and takes the stances that he does on specific issues. Sure, you can agree or not agree with the President’s stance on abortion or foreign affairs, but once he is in office and is actively taking stances on issues, who’s to say if he is doing the right or wrong thing? Have you been sitting in the oval office meetings? Do you know all of the details of a certain case and have you been personally briefed by the Secretary of Defense regarding military issues? For 99% of Americans, the answer is no. I am really tired of individual Americans (myself included) acting like we know what is best for our country. We may think we have all of the answers just because we watched an episode of The Daily Show or tuned into Fox for 30 minutes, but we don’t. We have seen the tip of the ice berg and are so quick to judge our leaders’ decisions!
The reason I have chosen to be happy with the decisions that our leaders make and remain “politically agnostic” is because of my experiences living in a military family, as well as my current job. I remember the confusion and sadness I felt after the terrorist attacks on 9/11. I was furious, and then grew worried when reports started coming out saying that Bush neglected the warnings and even had a hand in the attacks. People were criticizing him saying that he did not protect America the way he should have. Speaking with my dad who worked at the Pentagon for the Department of Defense, my view was quickly changed. “Courtney, do you realize how many terrorist threats are made on our country every single day? Do you know how many times this month alone our government has found Al Qaeda hide outs here in our own city and stopped attacks in progress?” No, I didn’t realize that. Because when you are so easily swayed by the media, friends, coworkers, and teachers, it is easy to jump on the bandwagon and hate on the President. It’s so easy to say “he should do this” or “he shouldn’t do that.” How quick we are to judge the decisions made by our President when we don’t have all of the facts.
At work every day, I have to make decisions that sometimes seem ludicrous to my students and coworkers. Some of them get fired up and take it out on me, while others accept it and know that I have been entrusted to make decisions that will benefit the majority. This, on a much smaller scale, has allowed me to experience firsthand why being politically agnostic may actually be beneficial for our country and the state we are currently in. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have feelings and view points on certain issues, I’m just saying that remaining open-minded and accepting that you do NOT know all of the facts can help. The public candidate bashing has gotten absolutely out of control, in my opinion. Regardless of who we have in office or what party he or she is affiliated with, why not pray for their decision-making skills instead of immediately bashing them. If you don’t pray, send vibes, positive though ts, or simply meditate. What’s the worst that can happen?
Our leaders are voted into office and take on a great load to keep our country safe and well. I am willing to bet that some of the knowledge that our presidents and military officials have come to learn makes them sick, and they wish they could unknow parts of it. What a blessing it is to have leaders who are willing to take all of this sensitive and burdening information and make educated decisions to benefit our country, no matter how unpopular they may be.
So here is to remaining politically agnostic. Accepting that I don’t understand or know the details of certain decisions or beliefs and recognizing that there is no way for us, as a society, to come into this knowledge. For this I am grateful; most of us would not be able to handle it. Here’s to voting, it is an amazing right that we posses, while many other nations do not. And finally, here’s to supporting whoever is elected into office no matter what party, race, religion, or sex the candidate may be.
2 thoughts on “Politically Agnostic”
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Courtney, fascinating post. We are so very fortunate to live in a land that has a constitution that distrusted ultimate power and built in the “balance of power” between the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches. Certainly inefficient at times, but one of my favorite quotes is from James Madison just after the passing of our Constitution. He said,”We have given you an inefficient government on purpose.”
We are about to vote for Presidency who leads just one the three branches of power (The Executive). Whereas our President plays an important role — he is not an unchecked dictator. Frankly, one of the most important things the President does is appoint or nominate the political leaders to critical positions of influence and decision making (like State Dept and leaders in DoD). So the election Tuesday is important — but thank God that we have been granted the priviledge of freedom that even the President is constrained from restricting.
To better understand what the President does face with regard to critical decisions, I highly recommend George W. Bush’s autobiography entitled, “Decision Point.” Fascinating read (or “listen” if you rent the CDs). You hear, in his own words/voice, the very important issues he was facing and why he went in the direction he did.
I love you, Dad