We all need to start doing our homework.
The problem with most American voters is that they latch on to the promises of a candidate in a rush to elect them, because they’re ready to get rid of the last candidate, whose promises they bought at the last election.
Our country has changed. Not so long ago, most Americans at least took a passing interest in staying informed on what was going on. When I say staying informed, I mean actually making an effort to seek out credible sources of information and form opinions based on as many facts as could be gathered.
Now, it seems many citizens are far more interested in following media personalities and politicians whose opinions and promises they like, rather than researching which news outlets are doing a good job and which politicians can back up what they offer.
We’ve reached a sad place when Americans pick news outlets just because they side with the politicians they like.
This isn’t a bowl game where we root for one team or the other. This is our country. There’s far too much at stake to watch a news channel or support a candidate just because we like what we hear.
If you look at any career politician (pick a party, because they’re equally guilty), you’ll find a list of what they promised, and a list of what they delivered.
It is exceedingly rare that these lists align.
Think of your last job interview. I’d bet that when you sat in the room talking to the people who would decide whether they were going to hire you, that you told them a lot of what you thought they wanted to hear.
Politicians are no different. What is different is that when we are electing someone to run our country, it’s paramount that we do our darndest to pick the right person.
Sadly, most employers do a much better job of background checking new hires than voters do a presidential candidate.
Those who are younger than 30 would be quite surprised to learn that there was a time when the news was delivered by someone with a true penchant for journalism who didn’t look like a supermodel, or someone from the cover of GQ Magazine.
Unfortunately, many in our country now seem quite happy to be spoon fed their information from people they like instead of people who report the facts.
There are a number of highly qualified people who could hold a variety of political offices, but most of them never see the light of day because the pundits tell the masses who is worthy and who is not.
But, it’s our own fault. We buy what they’re selling.
It has a lot to do with us living our lives at a rapid pace and just periodically checking in on our phone to see what’s going on with our country. That’s not how responsible citizens stay informed or elect the people who run the country.
We must take the time to educate ourselves, and to teach our children how to do the same.
The future of our country is all of our responsibility.
I challenge everyone this election cycle to put forth the extra effort it takes to dig a little deeper, read a little more and learn everything you can before you put a checkmark beside someone’s name come next election.
©2015 John Moore
For more of John’s musings, visit johnmoore.net/blog