I recently read that "fewer than 1 percent of our population works hard to divide us, to pit people against one another for their selfish aim."
We have elections at our doorsteps. Much of the election advertisements are trying to pit us against each other.
It seems that each election the voter turnout is slight — generally less than 50 percent of the registered voters. Yet the vote decides who is going to govern us. That power to govern includes state and local taxation; education of our children; providing for our safety and our security; and creating laws and policies that will support or devastate our economy.
It includes the power to wage, or not to wage, war; to give and take away our freedoms; to control the very fabric of our day-to-day lives. Yet, we still have people who do not vote.
I remember a conversation with my grandparents from when I was young. My grandfather voted for one political party; my grandmother the other. They decided not to vote, under the excuse, "We just cancel each other out." I really goes much beyond that.
I have an agenda when I vote. I want my rights and my clients’ rights to be protected. I want my clients not to worry about healthcare. I want there to be adequate and affordable health services for them.
I want them to have financial security. I want their businesses, farms, retirement, Social Security, and Medicare to be protected. I want them to be safe in their homes; I want them to be safe outside their homes.
I also want certain fundamental rights protected for those who may be of limited means or maybe of a minority group, as well as those who have a not so popular religion or lifestyle. I do not want mob rule to control us. I want to be sure that we have all the freedoms guaranteed by our Constitution and Bill of Rights – including free speech, the right to vote, privacy, and a free press.
So, that is my agenda. That is my test. Let me add something that my grandfather taught me – do not trust someone who continues to lie, no matter how big or small the lie. Walk away from that person. That too is part of my test of a candidate.
Create your own agenda, your own test. Yours may be a lot different than mine. That is fine. We will not cancel each other out, just please vote. Vote for the person that most matches your agenda. Vote for someone you trust; someone who has earned that trust. No candidate is perfect, but we cannot just give up by not voting.
Please vote your interests on Tuesday.
Randy Clinkscales is a 1980 graduate of Washburn Law School.