Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Voting, and an update on me

I voted yesterday. I don't have TV or internet at home so it's been hard to keep up with candidates and issues and current event. My main contact with the outside world is Minnesota Public Radio, but seeing as how I live in North Dakota, this didn't help me in getting information on what I would be voting on. (Yeah, North Dakota has a public radio station I could listen to, but when it comes to quality content MPR kicks Prairie Public's ass!)

I remember when I was a kid there was a kids' voting thing at school where kids got to vote in a mock election to see what it's like and to encourage them to be real voters when they became adults. Parents were urged to accompany their kids to this event. My mom came. We had our little ballots and Mom was teaching us what the process was like. We were in a similar situation then as far as not having a lot of information about the issues and candidates that actually affected us. I grew up in a tiny town in Arizona just south of the Utah border and all the TV stations we picked up came out of Utah. We never had any idea what was going on in Arizona. I remember my mother telling us, "If you don't know who the candidates are, just vote Republican, because you know you agree with the way Republicans think more than Democrats." (To give you the idea of the depths of my parents' conservatism, when they attempted homeschooling for a couple of years, their idea of social studies was to flip on Rush Limbaugh.)

So now I'm all grown up and making my own decisions. I was not as well-informed as I would have liked to have been when I went to the polls yesterday. What did I do? I voted straight-ticket Democrat. I don't recommend this. Normally I try to read up on candidates, listen to debates, etc. and then make a decision, but I've had more difficulty accessing information this year, and frankly, with all the chaos in my personal life, I just haven't been as interested in politics. So I didn't read up on the candidates or ballot measures. I do still feel a civic responsibility to vote, though, and I know that I agree with Democrats more often than Republicans, and that the chances are very good that had I done my research, my ballot still would have looked the same. On the ballot measures, I figured I'm intelligent enough that I could just read them on the ballot and make a decision in the booth. And that's what I did.

As far as what's going on with me, still no internet at home, though I have discovered free WiFi in the parking lot of the local Kmart, so after dropping my son off at school in the morning, I pull in there and quickly check email and moderate any blog comments. With only a few minutes, I don't usually have time to respond individually the way I would like to and I apologize. Thank you all so much for your kind comments on my grandmother's passing. It's been an interesting few weeks. Just when I think I have one fire under control, another one flares up, but we're managing, and on the whole, life is more good than not. I am at peace.

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10 comments:

  1. "L" you have such a great attitude in the face of the thingies of life. You have inspired me. Keep it up.

    Kriss

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  2. Hang in there, Leah. IMO this was probably a good year to vote the straight Democratic ticket. I follow politics on TV and the Internet. However our ballot here in SF was 5 double-sided pages. I confess I was clueless on a couple races and just checked the candidate with "D" next to his/her name. Glad to hear you're managing through this tough time. Sending good thoughts your way.

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  3. Thanks, Donna, and thanks for voting!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hey Leah, glad to hear that you're doing ok, with all of the changes in your life lately. Like some others have said, I'm also inspired by your strength, to make the changes that you have made, to not just make the best of things.
    If you're looking for spirituality, you might check out the Center For Interfaith Projects (CIP) in Fargo. I've gotten to know the executive director David Myers. David is a retired MSUM philosophy professor/activist trying to do something new in Fargo, to regularly bring the various local traditions together to find common ground, and to develop mutual respect and understanding amongst them. For me, one of the (unintentional) side-effects of this "pluralistic" view toward religions is that they all seem to boil down to spirituality, which, from my understanding, is a range of human experience that is not fully understood by science, so I find it interesting.

    The CIP has a physical location in the Sprit Room on Broadway. Their web site is http://www.centerforinterfaithprojects.org/home.html.

    Even if you don't find what you're looking for in the Spirit Room, you might find something helpful or at least interesting there or at one of their events.

    The Red River Freethinkers love your blog and have missed you, take care!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks, Becky!

    Jason, nice to hear from you! Thanks for the info on the CIP. I checked out their website and the lecture this Sunday looks fascinating. And it's very flattering to hear that the Freethinkers enjoy my blog. I would like to get back to attending the meetings, just have had conflicts almost every time. Spirituality means different things to different people. I'm exploring what it means for me.

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  6. "Normally I try to read up on candidates, listen to debates"

    Eww. Don't listen to debates. They're wastes of time where the candidates talk a lot but say nothing. By all means research the candidates and their records, but avoid staged theater like debates and town-hall meetings.

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  7. My dear Ms Elliott,
    It is completely true that one never really gets a break from dealing with all the zaniness in life. Sometimes it's sad, sometimes mad, sometimes just plain weird(another word with the e before the i). I wish you strength as you continue your transition toward autonomy and happiness , or something like it.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hey Leah, glad to hear that you're doing ok, with all of the changes in your life lately. Like some others have said, I'm also inspired by your strength, to make the changes that you have made, to not just make the best of things.
    If you're looking for spirituality, you might check out the Center For Interfaith Projects (CIP) in Fargo. I've gotten to know the executive director David Myers. David is a retired MSUM philosophy professor/activist trying to do something new in Fargo, to regularly bring the various local traditions together to find common ground, and to develop mutual respect and understanding amongst them. For me, one of the (unintentional) side-effects of this "pluralistic" view toward religions is that they all seem to boil down to spirituality, which, from my understanding, is a range of human experience that is not fully understood by science, so I find it interesting.

    The CIP has a physical location in the Sprit Room on Broadway. Their web site is http://www.centerforinterfaithprojects.org/home.html.

    Even if you don't find what you're looking for in the Spirit Room, you might find something helpful or at least interesting there or at one of their events.

    The Red River Freethinkers love your blog and have missed you, take care!

    ReplyDelete

Religion, skepticism, and carving out a spiritual life post-Mormonism