The current political environment of extremism, lack of statesmanship and the seeming inability of politicians to stand for anything other than getting re-elected helped me realize that I needed to clearly define what matters to me, so that I could see through all the slight of hand and cast my future votes with confidence.
So, after much mental wrangling, I came to understand that principles trump issues. An issue is derived from one or more principles, but the opposite is never true. Issues can be used to divide people, but principles provide a clarion view to what really matters. Armed with this understanding, I have tried to write down my guiding principles.
I believe that ours is still a government for the People, by the People, but there is no guaranty that it will stay that way if we allow politicians to scare us into signing away our constitutional rights; that government should live within its means just like we do; that government should first and foremost provide for the well-being of the least fortunate among us; that politicians should only be able to accept political contributions directly from individual citizens…not from corporations or other non-person entities; that shadowy political organizations like “MoveOn.org” and “Swift Boat Veterans” are shameful blights on our system and should not be allowed to exist; that government has no business telling us how, or with whom, we live our lives so long as we do not infringe on the rights or well-being of anyone else; that religion has absolutely no place in a science classroom, but should be explored in a well-balanced religious studies curriculum; that outlawing drugs creates a climate of greed, misery and death, while decriminalizing drugs allows us to focus on rehabilitation, education and opportunity; that war should ALWAYS be the option of last resort because violence will inevitably breed more of the same; that climate change is very real and development of renewable green energy is good for the environment, leads to energy independence and greater homeland security; that politicians who pander to the extreme elements in their respective parties, whether on the left or right, sacrifice the values of the vast center of sensible people.
This, I believe.
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