When neither choice sits well with your conscience.

Welcome to politics.

 

It’s routine for the Wednesday morning post-election armchair political experts to sit back and tell us what we did wrong with our vote, and that’s their right, but based on my own experiences, too often these days there is no “great” choice. We sort through the crap, vote our conscience and hope for the best.

There are people out there who are clearly aligned for or against a candidate based on ideals, values, etc. Then there are those who struggle with the vote because they’re weighing so many things in order to make a well-informed choice. After all, voting is serious business, as it should be. We’re told from an early age “You have to vote” and that “Not voting is not an option”. Sadly, often times we’re reduced to the choice “lesser of two evils”.

 

Very few times in the 35 years I’ve been voting have I been excited or proud of a candidate. And in the few times I have been, it turned out that politically the candidates were incredibly competent, but their morality was an absolute disgrace. And that’s when I got the cold cruel lesson early on that it’s rare to find a decent, honest person of high personal integrity who is also politically competent — to MY standards.

And then over the years I got another hard lesson: that these days, rarely, if ever, will one find a candidate who checks off most of the boxes and that all too often, most candidates are just not the best choice. What’s a voter to do?

Not happy with the candidates I have to choose from, I can only weigh the choices (and consequences) heavily to be absolutely sure on what I’m willing to compromise and on what I’m not. I said I’d never do it, but the truth is that I’d never be able to fill in most of those little circles with my black ink pen if I didn’t compromise something. You learn a lot about yourself, and others, when you do that.

 

Alas, as I said, voting is serious business, as it should be.

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