© 2008 by muttonchopsbyiris
When I took a class on interpersonal relationships (more years ago than I care to admit), the instructor stated that we always have a choice. Regardless of the situation or circumstance, there is absolutely, positively, undeniably a choice. I was among those in the class who said, "Not always - sometimes your back is against the wall, there are times ...."
The teacher shook his head in opposition. "You may not like your choices, but they are always there."
After digesting his statement, I realized he was right, and even better, that his statement was liberating.
We are never stuck with one option. Even if someone has a gun to your head, you have a choice - do as you are told or don't. Ultimately you have the power of making the decision and accepting the consequences of your choice.
Taking choices a step further, you can opt to turn negatives into positives based on the choices you create for yourself, as proven by one woman's political statement. Shannon Bennett of Texas was tired of having the Obama political signs stolen from her yard. She had choices - she could have stopped putting out signs, she could have staked out the thieves, she could have whined to her local authorities. Instead, she made a better wheel - she bought 12 cans of spray paint and turned her front yard into one huge Obama sign! Innovative, positive and she's a great role model for thinking outside the box.
In Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Shawn Turschak was fed up with his McCain/Palin signs disappearing. Being an electrical engineer, he decided to send a shocking message to would-be criminals. Unfortunately, his first victim was a 9-year-old boy. Of course dad says the kid was just examining the sign. The child was also trespassing and should have been taught, like I was, if it's not yours, don't touch it! The police got involved, no one got in trouble.
Was the Chapel Hill Shocker wrong? Perhaps, but it was predictable. He took the easy choice and was vindictive in his quest to assault burglars. The kid probably deserved a pop on the hand but got a zap instead and there's always the danger of shocking the wrong person, sending them into deathly arrhythmia. (I shudder to think about the potential for barbecued squirrels on this guy's lawn.)
As election day closes and we obtain the results, we must realize the choices we had, recognize our actions, and live with them in a positive manner. Voter turn-out is breaking records everywhere and people are passionate about their candidates.
If you chose to vote, you exercised one of the most important freedoms we have. This country was established on freedoms and creating democracy. Early settlers took huge risks and lost much by coming here. So many died and suffered while declaring independence from the English monarchy. Everytime I see "Iron Jawed Angels" (http://iron-jawed-angels.com/), I am awestruck by how long it took women to get the right to vote, and that less than 100 years ago, suffragists paved the way for me to do something many take for granted.
Yet, those who chose not to vote must recognize they exercised a right as well. Today, we have a multitude of ways to become registered voters, and the methods of voting are abundant. No one can say they are left out of the voting process. Additionally, to ignore it is to make a choice.
Perhaps you weren't aware of your options, but again, made the choice not to inquire. I would never condemn someone for not voting, but would admonish them should they complain.Whether our preferred candidates win or lose, we still have choices about our behavior over the next four years. We can sit back, whining or cheering, basking in victory, or shuddering in defeat.
Another option is to move forward. If you are not happy with the politicians in office, start acting now. Get involved, learn the issues, stay informed, and volunteer in the next election.
If you are satisfied, my advice is the same. Don't rest on your laurels thinking our world is now safe. Make sure these elected officials keep their promises by writing, calling, and having your voice heard.
People in the past made choices and died for me to have a voice today. The least I can do is choose to make sure I am heard.
© 2008 by muttonchopsbyiris
The Institute for Applied Common Sense invites our readers to serve as Guest Authors, and to submit articles on any subject in the universe, consistent with our philosophy. http://theviewfromoutsidemytinywindow.blogspot.com/2008/08/post-no-34-opportunity-to-serve-as.html
What is that? We believe that all discourse can be civil. We also believe that reasonable people can differ, and yet intelligently work together, in a collaborative fashion, to come up with innovative solutions which advance the positive, long term interests of society. We also strive to stimulate thought and assist our readers in appreciating that there are not just 2 or 3 ways looking at issues, but at least 27. Responsibility requires such an approach.
The article appearing above was submitted earlier in the week, prior to the election. We apologize for not publishing it earlier.
Opportunity to Serve as "Guest Author"
This forum was designed to be YOUR forum for the civil exchange of ideas by people with all points of views. We welcome the submission of articles by all of our readers, as long as they are in compliance with our Guidelines contained in Post No. 34. We look forward to receiving your submissions.