2022 November 8 Be united and vote

Nov 08, 2022

Hi, this is Jim Cranston from 7EveryMinute and 7EveryMinute.com, the podcast and website by, for, and about Baby Boomers. Thanks for joining me tonight for a talk about teamwork, common goals, and the election. So let's get started. 


So this LIVE is being broadcast on US Election Day 2022. So first off, I do hope you took the time to really review your candidates and the issues, and then went and voted to make your opinion known.


A representative form of government only works if the people participate, and many elections are often close, so your vote really does count. Of course many people are all wrapped up about whether their party's winning or beating the other political party. So I think now is a really good time to step back and remember some of the basics about what the US is and is not, and how the government is formed, starting with it's not a democracy.


We talk about that a lot. It's a constitutional federal republic. It's similar to, but quite different than a pure democracy. In a pure democracy, the winning 50.1% can force their will onto the losing 49.9%. The very basis of a constitutional republic is that the rights of all constituents are preserved, not just those of the winning majority.


This is a really significant differentiating principle of our republic. There are many checks and balances, including the three-way division of power, to help preserve the rights of everyone, not just the majority. Next, we're not a single country. America, that's the US, is made up of a close union of 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five major territories, plus many other uninhabited territories.


But it's an important distinction. By design, there are a number of different regions or states working for a common goal. However, they can have very differing ways of living within a wide range of ideologies. There are many common requirements or laws for sure, and a lot of laws regulating interstate commerce, but is on purpose and indeed a founding principle of the country, that each state is free and independent to manage and guide its citizens in the way that's most appropriate and approved by the citizens themselves, not the federal government, which by law only has the rights not otherwise given to the states.


So rather than a breakdown in the law, the difference between states is by design, and a fundamental property of the USA, the United States of America. It's even stated in our name. So despite what the news and many commentators say, the US is not a democracy by design. It's a constitutional federal republic, and it’s very different and a much safer form of government than a full democracy.


Equally important to the concept of a union of states to form a government is the often overlooked concept that, as a country, we have far more in common with each other than the news would lead us to believe. We've talked about this before, many times. If you've traveled outside the US at all, you'll understand what I mean.


But if not, there are dozens, hundreds of concepts and principles in the US that are common here, that either are not common elsewhere, or actually even actively opposed. They range from truly fundamental ideas such as that everyone is equal, and also neither banning a requirement or adherence to a particular religion, to ways of social behavior, and a fundamental right to pursue happiness.


Remember, that's the very fundamental piece of our Constitution and the laws that govern this land is our right to pursue happiness. Not our right to pursue happiness in a particular fashion with a particular set of beliefs, but our right to pursue happiness. Many, if not most, of these concepts are far from universal and they're often overlooked. Besides being an amazing gift from our founders and our ancestors, it's something that defines us as similar to each other in very many ways. Simply, we have far more in common with each other than we do in difference. The news and many special interest groups have much to gain by trying to pitch our country as so wildly binary and opposed to each other, and we're in constant turmoil.


That simply isn't true. If you look at the realities, are the differences? Of course there are. Are there some very important differences? Yes, of course there are. Are most of them readily reconcilable with real discussion? That's also, yes, of course. But these days, any differences are portrayed as the end of something: our country, the way of life, freedom.


But if we'd actually follow the rules of our land, and stop letting the judiciary legislate from the bench, stop letting the president write decrees in non-emergency situations, and stop allowing Congress to delegate legislation to unelected bureaucracies, then the system really does protect everyone, and our differences will be worked out using the processes that have kept this country together for over two centuries with the same basic form of government.


I bring this all up because, by tomorrow morning, there'll be many talking heads carrying on about some mandate or some horrible loss or some threat from some other group. But in reality, that mandate is really often a couple of percentage points, and often it's just fractions of a percentage point in the overall voting results.


In other words, in very many cases, possibly most cases, there are roughly half the population on both sides of any issue, whether it's a law or an elected official, which means roughly half the population who voted will be disappointed, which can lead to a lot of dissatisfaction. What it should really lead to is a lot of celebration, because unlike many other countries, we do have an orderly process for the transfer of power.


But even more importantly, we have many processes in place that even those who did not win on a topic or an election, can be sure that their rights, their basic fundamental rights, will still be protected. And no, getting some particular perk or program is not necessarily a right. Rights are those things detailed and defined in the constitution, the amendments, and the fundamental laws of the land at all the levels of at all the levels of the government. Even if your party lost the election, you know that you still have the right to attend government meetings and to vote in elections in another two years. 


Even more importantly, you have the first amendment right of free speech, so you can write to the newspaper, you can have a blog to make reasoned arguments for your point of view. And with that right, comes the equally important responsibility to respect the point of view of dissenting opinions, for they're just as worthy as your own point of view. 


There's a big implied responsibility to engage in discussion as we've often covered. To learn about other points of view, and then through the laws of the land, to bring those issues to all the other people through due process, and let the robust government of the USA work to allow everyone to participate in moving this country forward. This isn't a popularity contest, and it's not a way to get the most handouts. It's not some way to sneak a law around the edge of the land. It's not some way to get your politicians to push something through on top of another bill.


It's a process to make the country better for everyone, to have everyone engaged and be heard, and be educated on the real issues, not just soundbites off of TV ads and social media influencers. Remember, we have far more in common than we do in difference, and it's up to all of us to participate and to ensure that everyone can participate, to move this country forward and engage everyone in real discussion so that we can in the end, again, be as we actually really are, the United States of America, the country that's known for its tolerance, both internally and externally, and its kindness and its generosity.


These are the things that define us. These are the things that move us forward. These are the things that aren't set by a bunch of political ads, particularly all the negative advertising that you see these days in political ads. The generosity, the tolerance of the US. That's actually in the people themselves, not in some TV show, not in some political party. That's what we have together. That's what we have in common, and that's what we have to focus on.


So that's it for the evening. A reminder, we have some new Daily Minutes coming to talk more about being kind to yourself and lots of different related topics. There's a whole bunch of things. If you don't, please follow us on Twitter, TikTok, Facebook. We're in all sorts of places now, and that way we can chat a few times each week.


So thank you very much. I do hope you took the time to vote in an educated manner and respected everyone's opinions, because that's what truly makes us a strong united country. Again, as always, please remember the Ukraine: UKR7.com. That's just an ongoing situation. It's not going away. Everybody needs your support. Winter is coming. Now there's a new link there for getting food support to the Ukraine. You can pass it along to other people. Thank you very much to the people who have supported, and if you haven't, think about what you're going to do for Christmas. One good way to give a gift is to make a donation in the name of somebody else.


So that's it for the evening. Thanks. Please remember the war in Ukraine again. Remember, one of the best ways to care for yourself is to care for others. As always, be true to yourself. Live your life aligned with your true goals and feelings. Thank you for stopping by. If you found something interesting and useful, please pass it along. Please hit that like button. If not, please drop me a comment as to what you'd like to hear. 


Have a great week. Remember to live the life that you dream of, because that's the path to true contentment. Love and encouragement to everyone, and see you next week on 7EveryMinute and 7EveryMinute.com. Thanks so much.


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