I decided that I was going to be an informed voter in this election. I was determined to know what the different elected officials do and to understand as much as I could about what each candidate thought about issues that were important to me. I did some research before the primaries where there was a choice. After the primaries were over I started a deeper dive on the candidates for the county level offices, then going to state legislature for my districts and moving up to state wide candidates. I focused my research on the candidates stance and prioritization of children’s issues. I shared my research and my conclusions based on who I felt was the better champion for children. I will admit it was a stretch some times, if none of the candidates listed anything to do with children, education, crime or healthcare. I COMPLETELY IGNORED PARTY! Researching the incumbents I looked at the statistics and trends corresponding to the time they had been in office or in a previous elected offices. The results were disturbing which is why I ended up only voting for one incumbent (https://wordpress.com/post/voteforkids.wordpress.com/379). I learned so much this election cycle and I know I will never go back to being uninvolved in the state and local government. We spend so much time and energy following the media who focuses on the presidential and what they deem important national elections. The truth is the state and local elected officials have a lot more impact on our day to day lives then any president.
I used to be a Republican and pretty much voted the party line although when it came to a lot of social issues I did not agree with the party. I never paid much attention to the candidate themselves or what they believed in. Like so many others I bought into the belief that fiscal responsibility and strong economy were the right priorities. I have had a change of heart. I have watched, I have listened and I have read differing points of view then researched the facts behind the views. I came to completely understand that because corporations, business and the financial sector have only one goal which is to make a profit, taking care of people or social issues is never going to be a priority for them Elected government officials should work for the voters, not the corporations or industries that donate the most. Elected officials should be first and foremost taking care of the people they represent. To grow, prosper and move forward all people in this country and in my state deserve to feel safe, to have a roof over their head, healthcare, food and the basic necessities of life. People over corporations and especially children are the right priorities. Working on those basics will move the statistics in the right direction, lower crime, lower violence, better education = more jobs and economic growth. That is my believe system now.
The organizations with the most money control most of the advertising and the news media. ADS skewing the truth are made to create a message that will draw people into believing what they are telling them is the absolute truth. I witnessed so many false TV advertisements come out the last few weeks of the election from both sides and I saw the impact it had on the voters. I was able to understand how the message being presented would appeal to those it was aimed at (Republican or Democrat), even as I saw the deceit. Many of us never question the beliefs we grew up with and hold to them even though they no longer fit the world. PLEASE NOTE I AM SAYING WE – INCLUDING MY SELF, I AM NOT POINTING AT ANYONE ELSE HOWEVER I THINK THESE BELIEFS ARE WIDESPREAD BASED ON WHAT I SEE ON SOCIAL MEDIA. The current political parties use these beliefs to manipulate and scare voters into voting for them.
BE SKEPTICAL, LISTEN, CHECK FACTS, LOOK FOR BIAS BEFORE DECIDING WHO IS WORKING IN THE PEOPLES BEST INTEREST.
I am going to stay involved. My local, county and state elected officials will probably end up knowing my name. I am going to follow the issues, watch how they vote, see how they respond and I am going to blog about it.
I AM going to continue to watch what is going on in the state legislature and continue to fight for the KIDS OF MISSOURI THAT HAVE NO VOICE BUT OURS.
Stay tuned for more to come on healthcare, education and children!