but nothing unifies like a common enemy.

This is a post about why I do not have political leanings. It may make you angry, it may make you delighted. You may respect me more because of it, or you may plot my untimely death in a manner befitting our depth of relationship. It’s your choice, but I do ask that you allow me to have my views, or lack thereof.

You may be aware that I do not support certain popular causes. I don’t think it’s morally right to take a life, no matter how old that life may be. I think that our troops have a very difficult job and I can’t even begin to imagine the psychological aftermath in following the kinds of orders they are given daily. I believe that the earth is a precious gift that we all have taken too lightly. I don’t support the import of foreign goods when those goods could easily be manufactured in our own country. And I don’t agree with the popular belief that immigrants should have to learn English in order to live in the United States.

But when I try to explain to others that none of those things affect my political position, somehow the dots do not connect. So let me provide a little clarity, if not for you than for myself.

It seems that every four years I am surrounded by people who make it their business to complain about the political candidates. Sometimes they even start arguing with me about their new person-of-interest, taking my stalwart silence as carte blanche to tear into my supposed apathy.

I’d like to say that not holding to any particular political party is the easy way out. Honestly, I think it’s very difficult. It’s difficult to stay objective when you’re told that your religious belief is only as good as your vote; when you see families torn apart because of some political rift. When the hate is all that stands out in any of the TV ads it’s hard to stay objective.

The destructive words, scandals, lies, manipulative statements, self-serving benefit events, the silky smooth smiles, starched and pressed dress pants, devoted wives. It all seems so calculated, positioned specifically for dramatic effect. Just the supporters alone could make a person not want to be counted among them.

So it is with an earnest desire to live my own life outside the whirlpool of opinions that I tell you today: I do not care who is president. I do not care what they do as president. It is none of my business what has occurred in their past. I have no say in their personal beliefs, and they have no say in mine. They will do their job as we all must do ours. But I will respect and support whomever is in authority over me. I will not hinder their creativity, I will not slander their character, I will not degrade their person just because I do not agree with them.

And I will not associate with anyone who does.

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