I used to want to run for elected office. I thought it was the coolest thing ever.
My grandpa was an “ankle biter” in El Paso and wanted to keep all the politicians on the up and up. He was fighting the government when he passed away and I was inspired that this man without a college degree could make such a difference.
He also took me on voter registration drives. He always voted. He was a die hard, straight ticket democrat. (like most Hispanics)
So when I turned 18 I was registered and I began my civic duty of voting. Then I became a lawyer and the starry eyed girl was still amazed. I was so excited to vote for President just two years later.
Then I moved to Austin (the Capitol of Texas) and practiced election law. Yeah, all those ambitions at a political career changed. The girl who believed that you could truly make a difference became jaded and pessimistic about the system.
Fast forward to Election 2012.
I’m so glad it’s over. SO SO glad. I skimmed over way too many status updates and tweets thinking, “WOW. I’m just sad for America.” It’s not because of who people were choosing to vote for. I don’t care who you voted for, but I hope you voted.
I was just so disappointed with the way people were interacting with each other. I was sad that some of the people I really liked could behave the way they did.
This election just got so vile. So personal. It’s like it became an “us vs. them” battle and the lines were clearly drawn.
Well you know what? It’s not. Not always.
I’m a red.
I don’t think you should be able to work the system and get free stuff if you don’t deserve it.
I think we need lots more jobs and help for small businesses who make a difference and create those jobs.
I’m pro gay marriage.
I think it’s great that birth control is free and I can take my kids for free well visits.
That doesn’t mean I’m right or the things I believe in are just so. That doesn’t mean that “my” candidate is the answer for the nation’s problems. That doesn’t mean I hate the next guy who doesn’t agree with me.
I obviously don’t vote straight ticket. And I never would. I took a long time prepping before heading to vote because I read up on all of the candidates. And I didn’t vote for just one party. I picked the best person I thought was best for the job.
I didn’t tell Ava who I voted for. I didn’t say anything about her choice for president. I don’t want her to feel like my beliefs have to be hers. I want her to make up her own mind. I encourage discussion. She’s only 6, I don’t expect much rationale behind her decision. But I don’t want to her to say she’s voting for someone because I said so. And I don’t want her to spout negatives about any candidate because she thinks that’s what I believe.
Perhaps I’ve become jaded, but I think at the end of the day, the President is often nothing more than a talking head. It isn’t just that person that makes the nation go round. There are SO many people behind the scenes that influence things. Politics is a very dirty GAME.
Anyway…but I still voted. And I always will–regardless of whether they’re red or blue.