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Posted: Nov. 17, 2002
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Question of the Week: 14 - 11/6/2000
The Unresolved US Election
Did YOU vote? Which candidate did you vote for? How do you feel about the political wrangling going on right now in Florida? Will/Should either candidate concede for the good of the country-or should either/both fight it out until we all scream for mercy? How do you think either candidate, if declared the winner, will be able to bring the country together given the inference that the election results now point to an America that is almost equally divided into one camp or the other? And the BIG question-What, if any, impact will the final results have on the Pagan communities?
| Reponses: There are 263 responses posted to this question.
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| Being A Canadian, I Didn't Get A Chance To Vote. But I... ||Nov 9th. at 11:29:37 pm EST|
|Harvestar (Kingston, Ontario CA) ||Age: 19 - Email |
Being a Canadian, I didn't get a chance to vote. But I can assure you that the rest of the world watches the US presidential elections very intently. Canadians joke that we take more interest in the US elections that Americans do. To give you an idea of how intently some of us do watch what happens down south, I stayed up untill 2:00 am local time waiting to see what would happen in Florida. I happen to be a student, and had class the next day, but still I watched it. I'm perpetually watching CNN to see new developments. It is of prime interest to me, and to the rest of the world who the next leader of the free world is going to be. As of the time of this writing, 66 of 67 counties have reported their ballots for the Florida recount.
I'll start by addresing the Florida recount. I'm personally not well versed in Florida state law, but I do know a thing or two about western history. The origin of democracy its self begins in Ancient Athens, with the constitutions of Solon and Clisthenes. Times have changed since then, but the prinicple remains that the majority directs the way things go. Florida poses an interesting spin on the whole thing. Firstly, in Ancient Athens, voters would place a white or black rock into a pot. White meant yes, black meant no. This system worked quite well do to its simplicity. And so, I strongly feel that the citizens of West Palm Beach have a legitimate grievance. With what is at stake in this election, then I offer my support to the citizens of West Palm Beach, and the others who want another chance to vote. I also feel that maybe instead of being mired in recounts untill we're blue in the face, the American people's should give democracy another go, that is to say that maybe the state of Florida should simply vote again. If people want another chance because of the way things were handled then is not one of the cornerstones of democracy that they should be allowed one? According to various sources 19, 000 ballots were spoiled. That's 19, 000 people who did their civic duty, and went to vote. Those people would seem to have wasted their votes, as their voices are not being heard. Democracy functions on the principle that everybody is entitled to one vote. Democracy owes them that much. How can nations such as Canada, and Great Britain have any faith in democracy if the United States democracy fails its people?
Further, both candidates have been forced into an extremely difficult position regardless of who wins. If George Bush wins, he has clearly lost the popular vote, and therefore doesn't have the mandate of the people. He cannot in good consicience therefore, take any action without having a nation-wide refferundum. If Al Gore wins, then he has to contend with a predominately Republican House of Representatives and Senate. The man who does carry the people's mandate will have great difficulty enacting any bill at all. This whole situation leaves the United States in a very difficult situation. Clearly, this is no longer a time to worry about state law. The United States must do the right thing. If the United States does not do the right thing, then democracy has failed. With what is at stake, there can be no question, that every view must be heard. The eyes of the world now rest on the state of Florida.
I realize that the witches voice offers political neutrality, and so I must be objective in my judgements of the candidates. With what has been said in debates, it is clear that the fate of the Pagan community its self is at stake. It is in this time, that it will be decided wether we undergo more opression or if we will be free to live, love and worship as we choose. George W. Bush has publicly stated that he does not believe that witchcraft is a religion. Bush is publicly stating that some religions are more valid than others. This clearly violates the 1st ammendment. If George Bush wins the presidential election, then I fear that the pagan community is in great danger. In Canada we have a saying, "When the US sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold." I'm afraid that if George Bush wins the election, then Canada's answer to Bush, Stockwell Day will win the upcoming Canadian federal election. Stockwell Day is anti-gay, anti-abortion, essentially anti-rights. I can see my religious freedom flying out the window. If this can happen in Canada, then I dread to think what will happen in a United States ruled by George Bush. I value my rights. I will not spit on the graves of those who died to protect them. I sincerely hope that my American friends will do the same. I hope that anyone reading this will vote, if they can. I hope that anyone reading this who has had the chance to vote did vote. I hope that you voted for the right person. I'm 19, which means I can vote. I've had a hard time getting through to elections Canada to get onto the voters list. But I will vote. I hope that democracy doesn't fail. There's too much riding on it to fail. People died for your right to vote, and many others that you take for granted. I owe them at the verry least, my vote. I think that we all know what's right. I hate to quote Dr. Laura, but it's time to do the right thing.
| I Voted For Gore, With No Equivocation Or Regret Whatsoever. I've Admired... ||Nov 9th. at 11:19:00 pm EST|
|Richard W. (Seattle, Washington US) ||Age: 32 |
I voted for Gore, with no equivocation or regret whatsoever. I've admired his intelligence and rigorous participation in crucial environmental issues over the years, even prior to his tenure as vice president, during which my respect has nothing but increased. And I'm so vigorously anti-Republican that I'd prefer to see the Gore campaign fight tooth and nail--at least until the fairness and integrity of the Florida elections is beyond question. Concede? To a man that doesn't consider Wicca/paganism on a par with other religious/personal belief systems? No thanks. That's actually the least of my worries; I object to just about everything Republicans stand for, and I would particularly dislike seeing Bush as president. Bush is like a 2 by 4: strong and reliable, but no discernible intelligence. As hawkish as it sounds, I have no intention of buddying up with fundamentalist Christians and their Senate cohorts that occasionally conspire to prohibit abortion, reward the rich and otherwise compromise my interests in keeping church and state perpetually separate. I must admit I want a little payback for all the impeachment/travelgate/Whitewater shenanigans they led us into. Perhaps that's unhealthy, but if you have a long-term interest in seeing social inequities addressed instead of merely salivating over the size of your tax cut and what you'll personally get out of it, then the issue is relatively clear. Unfortunately, Gore might not make it. It'll be like the Reagan years--please wake me when the nightmare's over! Pardon the rhetoric, and I'm definitely partisan, but that's how I gauge it.
| I Voted For Al Gore Mostly Because I Feel He Has The... ||Nov 9th. at 11:07:16 pm EST|
|Amethyst Dove (Ponca City, Oklahoma US) ||Age: 43 - Email |
I voted for Al Gore mostly because I feel he has the most tolerance and acceptance of Americans' diversity in all areas of their lives.
George W. Bush, Jr. has stated that he does not believe that Wicca is a valid religion. That is a scary thought.
If Bush was in Gore's place in reference to the allegations of voting irregularities, he would be fighting for every American's right to vote their conscience just as Gore is doing.
I believe Al Gore is sincere, honest and dedicated to bringing America together.
| I Voted For Gore, But Was Not Really Sure. I Had Considered... ||Nov 9th. at 10:43:15 pm EST|
|Stacy Marshall (Oconomowoc, Wisconsin US) ||Age: 37 |
I voted for Gore, but was not really sure. I had considered Bush at first, and liked some of his policies, but was against his stance on religion, and abortion, and his wanting to drill on the wildlife refuge in Alaska, but Gore is no prize either (inventing the internet, huh??). I just want them to get the votes counted. I guess the absentee ballots have to be in by Nov. 17 and then they get 10 more days to count them, so we are looking at at least Nov. 27 to get a final count. What a mess! If some people are so careless to mark a ballot incorrectly, that's their problem, but they are now making it the nation's problem. Why didn't they ask someone for help or assitance in reading the ballot. They didn't understand it but went ahead and marked it anyway. Very stupid! I am against a revote. Count what comes in and declare a winner and end it right then and there. America is supposed to be a model for democracy for the rest of the world. Other nations must be shaking their heads at the "UNITED" States. I know I am. People in Florida have hired lawyers because they are "vitctims" of a confusing ballot. Give me a break. Take responsibility for your actions. Isn't that what we Pagans believe? I am really disillusioned with this whole election and will vote Green next time.
| I Voted For Gore, Mostly Because I Didn't Like Bush And His... ||Nov 9th. at 10:31:02 pm EST|
|Bethy (Staten Island, New York US) ||Age: 33 - Email |
I voted for Gore, mostly because I didn't like Bush and his opinions on Wicca and on abortion. I think it is most likely that nothing will change and we won't have any problems, as far as freedom of religion. However, that scared paranoid part of my mind worries about stakes, gallows, and pyres in town squares. After all, Bush sounded so *gleeful* in the debate when he talked about putting people to death. That scared me.
I'd rather have boring than scary. Much safer.
| Not To Be A Hog - I Know I Already Posted An Opinion... ||Nov 9th. at 10:29:04 pm EST|
|Susan (Huntington, New York US) ||Age: 39 - Email |
Not to be a hog - I know I already posted an opinion - but a thought has occured to me......
If, by some chance, the electoral votes in Florida were to be eliminated from the count due to possible fraud...
and there were no candidates receiving enough electoral college votes to win...
and the President of the Senate has to choose the winning candidate....
would Gore, President of the Senate, be allowed to choose himself??
Time to do away with the electoral college.
| Yes, I Voted This Year - Almost Reluctantly Since I Was Not Enthralled... ||Nov 9th. at 10:24:17 pm EST|
|Susan (Huntington, New York US) ||Age: 39 - Email |
Yes, I voted this year - almost reluctantly since I was not enthralled with any of the candidates. After much thought, I cast my vote for Al Gore. To some it may seem illogical, but the energy I receive from GW Bush is negative, self-serving, punitive. I was particularly stunned to view an interview conducted by Larry King with Mr and MRS Bush. It seems that GW doesn't trust his wife to speak for herself - he looked like he must be kicking her under the table. She seemed uncomfortable when asked her OWN opinion on an issue. On the other hand, Gore doesn't have that self-serving energy attached to him, and he seems to truly trust his wife and love her. Now, I am not a feminist, and I don't judge a man by his wife. But how a man treats his wife is indicative of how he may treat others - bully them? Treasure them? Humiliate or control them? And those other people, friends, could be you or me.
| I Personally As A Social Worker And A Pagan Voted For Gore... ||Nov 9th. at 10:22:43 pm EST|
|Ray Stanton (Fountain Valley, California US) ||Age: 28 - Email |
I personally as a Social Worker and a Pagan voted for Gore. I feel that Bush is simply too closed minded on issues of social policy and religion. However I feel that both canidates are acting childish with regard to this election. I still believe that whatever the outcome of Florida the losing canidate will drag it out. In history we have maybe once had a race this close.
As for the Florida scandal I am simply amazed that it took something like this to correct the problem. Now reports are coming out on just how messed up the elections down there have been. If I had some decision making power with regards to the elections I would eliminate the Electoral College in favor of the popular vote and unify the ballot system so that the confusion in Palm Beach would be eliminated.
| I Voted For Gov. Bush B/c I Feel He Is The... ||Nov 9th. at 10:19:26 pm EST|
|Mary (Greenville, North Carolina US) ||Age: 23 - Email |
I voted for Gov. Bush b/c I feel he is the best candidate for the job....I do not feel that either candidate will have any impact on pagan communities or threaten the freedom of religion.
| I Voted. I Voted For Gore. I Can't Believe Everything That Is... ||Nov 9th. at 9:48:18 pm EST|
|Kyla (Somewhere in... , Michigan US) ||Age: 20 |
I voted. I voted for Gore. I can't believe everything that is happening with the election. I hope the recount is in Gore's favor. I just can't believe that Bush won, and the ballot problems, double votes and Bush saying early on that even though they gave it to Gore he'd win it ALONG with the fact that Bush's brother is governor are just all too coincidental for me. Anyway, Bush would be bad for the country, he wants to get rid of abortion, witchcraft, and give a tax break to the wealthy.
| Well, I Voted For Nader. This Whole Thing In Florida Looks Like... ||Nov 9th. at 9:46:23 pm EST|
|Timothy Wolf (Milwaukee, Wisconsin US) ||Age: 32 |
Well, I voted for Nader. This whole thing in Florida looks like it could turn into a big mess. The present problem most likely won't end until the absentee ballots are counted which will be what; next week? That's
not counting the ballots that were thown out and the possible lawsuits over
them (some people have already gotten lawyers). Who knows what will happen
with that? Add to that the possiblity that if Gore wins Florida somehow, the Republican Party is talking about challeging the results in some of the
states where Bush lost by a narrow margin. Plus the possible other actions
the two parties could do (too many to go into). I just hope, one way or
the other, it gets settled before the parties really get into it. Right now
they're still spectators, but if they start hurling accusations at each
other it'll most likly get ugly. If that happens then they'll have one more
thing to distract us from the fact they not really doing anything. As to
what effect the next President will have on the Pagan commuity? With Gore
things will probably stay as they are. With Bush? We may have problems, we
may lose some of what we've gained (especialy with respect to the military),
but when he's gone I'm sure we'll still be here.
| Of Corse I Voted I Feel It Is My Duty To Make... ||Nov 9th. at 9:44:14 pm EST|
|Douglas S. Heisel (Ottumwa , Iowa US) ||Age: 35 |
OF CORSE I VOTED I feel it is my duty to make my opinion heard as an american and as a Pagan. If we all just sit back and watch the system work then the only people who the government will work for are the major corporations. We as Pagans must make our vote heard or allow our rights to be dissolved by the "Moral Majority" then who knows quite possible welcome back to the burning times. Our collective voice can keep our first admendment unchanged. I voted for Ralph Nader because in the last 20 or 25 years he's proven, to me at least that he actually cares about the people of this country. As for the green party alot of their issues as well as Naders are very close to what my own are. Of course their are a few where we disagree However for the most part I felt him to be the only true choice. I find Gore's accusation that Nader stole votes from what should have been gore's. AS childish, It sounds to me as if Gore thinks the American people to ignorant to make their own choice.
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