The Burning of The Ballot

Here’s my  Official Presidential Primary Ballot:

20160506_192242

Now  watch this  short video:

Yep… that was an official  ballot…. A complete  waste of  paper, postage, money and time…

I typically  vote in most all elections.  Had there been something worth voting for, where my vote would actually matter  I would have kept it, voted and (paid) to mail it back in… (that’s an entirely different matter  that you can read my thoughts on here:  http://wp.me/s2RcFA-126 )

But what would have been the point  in voting in this  particular election?  Washington State’s delegates  are  chosen  by  1 county  in all reality, the most populous county  that is 99.99%  left liberal democrat. Most of the state is actually  Republican,    but   the population in King County makes it  next to impossible for  Republicans  to get anywhere in federal  elections anyway. Not that I am even  a Republican any more, I officially disown that party. I disown all political parties in  American politics at this point.  I agree with  some of what  Republicans think, some of what Democrats think, some of what Libertarians think,  most of what Centrists think,  but I  prefer, at this point,  to  not be affiliated with any of them and  vote for individuals.

But that isn’t my point with burning my ballot! This was  a symbol of my utter disgust with  this election, this sad  embarrassment to our  great nation. You can  go back in history and  say that there have been many  controversial  elections, many  people who said ” if so and so  got elected in 18XX   the Country would  be finished”. Shoot, you can even go back to when Obama was elected and  point to people who claimed that would happen (oh and in case you haven’t noticed we’re still here, and not really that  bad off, not perfect but not too bad).

I have, at least since my  military days,  said a few things that I strongly believed:

  1. You don’t have to respect the man ( now a days I would have to say “person” to be PC) but you do have to respect the position….  I have done that and practiced what I preached.  Even with President Obama, I didn’t vote for him, but once he won, I respected  the position.   I don’t have to agree with all the policies, and I can  vote for lower offices and  try to get  the people in office that will help to change things  to my way of thinking, it rarely works, but it does work ( Rep. Dave Reichert  https://www.facebook.com/repdavereichert/?fref=ts is one example of a “win” for me)
  2. If you don’t vote, don’t complain
  3. change happens at the local level.. grass roots & individual choice and action is the only way to make real change.

I find that it’s time in my life to revisit those items and  adjust some of  my  thinking

  1. I do respect the position of President of the United States of America, at least I do today.   No  I haven’t voted for a winner  since George W. Bush but I have still respected and not spoken  harshly or disrespectfully, especially openly in public about whomever has  been in the position since.  I used to vote straight down the Republican ticket,  those years are long past and  for at least the last 15 years, I vote for the person or the issue  regardless of party affiliation.   I read the  voter’s pamphlets, research the issues and  cast my  vote with my  conscience and that is not straight down any party line.  However,  with this upcoming election   for the office of President,  I cannot, in good conscience, vote for any of them. Each for various reasons that I need not go into.   I also will not be able to  respect  the person in  the office if it is Hillary or  Trump  and I  may truly lose my respect for the office itself if either of them  inhabit it. I could possibly respect Senator Sanders if he were to somehow get the delegates needed for the nomination, though I personally don’t agree with his policies, he’s the most respectable  of the three still  in the running,   though he still won’t get my vote. Not that my vote  for president or any of our votes  matter for that particular office. The lower  offices  yes our votes matter and I will cast mine as I see fit.  Not for President –  it’s been well established that our votes do not matter   – if you aren’t aware of how that works or why, here’s a great article on that – http://hubpages.com/entertainment/4-Reasons-Why-Your-Vote-for-US-President-Doesnt-Matter  Oh and  Washington State’s   vote… yeah well   it’s always  already decided before  our “polls”  close… so  unless it’s  Bernie Sanders or some crazy dark horse candidate, I will be one of those folks that lose all respect for the  office… sad, extremely sad,   but true.  I will be keeping a close eye  on  who Hillary  and  Trump  choose for  VP’s as  that person  may very well end up  with the job…. And  if so I may  regain the respect for the position.
  1. If you don’t vote you can’t complain…. I just had this discussion with a  friend of mine which caused me to rethink my  position on this,  strangely enough they are the one that posted that statement, which made me think……  and I  reversed my  previous stance believe it or not, old dogs can learn new tricks.. seriously I  learn something new every single day, and  I  challenge my own thoughts and beliefs regularly and  I probably challenge other’s  beliefs too often hahaha…   That friend posted that statement…  a statement that I used to believe…  but as of the past few years, I have really  been interested in   Constitutional law and various rights & civil liberties, ranging from equal rights for all, gun and property rights to free speech rights…a pretty wide  spectrum.    But, that  research, reading, arguing, debating and discussing  has made me realize that  even if you  don’t vote… ( you really should, at least at the local level)  you still have the right to complain if you want.. please note  that I say you have the right…   if you choose to exercise that,  you also  are choosing to  face the consequences of your actions in people exercising their right to talk back to you about your choice not to vote. So yes I have changed my position on my  younger way of thinking but  really  it’s a bit of semantics….either way   one thing to note, is that in that  Facebook  “conversation”  I didn’t  make my point  very well and ended up  ticking off that friend, who I respect. I  have since apologized  in a private message and hopefully  got forgiveness and  had my  explanation of what I was trying to say get  across…  if not,  here, publicly I again apologize for  my inflammatory remarks of your post that was taken down when you were trying to make a  decent point on  your voting day to get others to vote.
  2. Change… affecting change… this view hasn’t really changed but it’s  grown.  I have seen it work, I’ve helped it work.   Change  on a  large scale is  extremely rare but it is possible with small steps, small actions, grassroots is the way that change really happens.  That is changing  with the advent of  Social Media,  but  even there it starts small , a single post typically,  a few likes, a  couple  shares,  it gains momentum and poof it’s viral and  anyone can pee wherever they are most comfortable peeing  (which I happen to agree with).   On voting for your local  candidates –  get to know them, meet them, look them in the eye, listen to them, ask tough questions,  watch & LISTEN to their responses and hold them accountable.  Change is Possible, but you have to put effort  into it and  start locally.

 

Bottom line –   yes I burned my  presidential primary ballot …. But rest assured I will be voting   for my local and national  representatives,  for  my local and national  initiatives  and will  do what I can  to make a difference,  as I  do most every day in some small way, not just with votes but with actions –  the  actions that I always leave you with:

 

Stay Safe, Be Kind, Keep the Park Clean, Pay it forward, Make a Difference and One Love  –  http://wp.me/p2RcFA-3Z

 

Mikey

 

One thought on “The Burning of The Ballot

  1. Good morning MIchael…I share your disgust with our current political race…but I have come to a different conclusion. Even though Donald Trump was not my first choice ( Marco Rubio was my 1st choice) and not my 2nd choice ( Ben Carson had my heart but my head knew he could never win), I am going to be voting for Donald Trump when I step behind the election booth curtain. There are issues that far outweigh the doubts that I have about Mr Trump. The first and foremost in my heart is “who is going to be putting at least 1 and possibly 2 or 3 new members on the Supreme Court”. I feel like it is in our country’s best interest to have a conservative responsible for what will probably be the future of our Supreme Court for the next 30 – 40 years so I will be voting for Trump. I feel like our military will continue to be decimated and hamstrung with ridiculous ROE’s. There are other reasons that I feel like my best choice is to vote for Mr Trump but I won’t bore you ( and any other readers who might be reading comments lol). I understand your frustration and even your embarrassment but I cannot step away and not let my voice be heard.

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