Midterms: Important in School & Elections
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For most students out there, midterm season has just ended. If you cared at all about your grades, chances are you studied diligently because your midterm grade highly affects the outcome of your overall grade. Because of the long term consequences of a midterm, late nights studying, alongside the temporary sacrifice of sleep, and an overdose of coffee (if there is such a thing as too much coffee), seemed a small price to pay to help boost your chances at success.
Next week, America faces her midterms. The outcome depends on the effort of her students: the citizens of the United States. Yes, you reading this right now! If you haven’t already, please take the time to inform yourself on ALL races and issues that will be on the ballot in your area. It may seem overwhelming, but the long term consequences and unforeseen contingencies of apathy or uninformed voting are disastrous. A nation is only as good as its’ citizens. Or, as the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle said, “The identity of a polis is not constituted by its walls.” Rather the identity of a “polis” (meaning a city or more broadly, a country) is defined by the strength of its character and the display of its virtues. In America, informed citizens used to be the ultimate check on government’s behavior, but now we are becoming helpless slaves bowing to the government’s initiatives. Recent polls show that anywhere from 60 to 70% (the most common number I found was <a href="http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/direction_of_country-902.html" target="_blank">62%</a>) believe America is currently heading in the wrong direction. All of Europe is starting to fall apart before our eyes because of the policy decisions they made in the post World War II era. Greece and Great Britain are bankrupt; the streets of France have been filled with dangerous riots because the government dared to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62. These were all policies that increased the citizens reliance on government while diminishing the responsibility of the individual. The aftermath being displayed in Europe today is bound to hop across the Atlantic very soon if America decides to stay on the path to European style socialism.
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So, contrary to the rhetoric that is out in the media, do not vote based purely on your emotions. As Thomas Sowell so correctly stated, “Too often voting is conceived as some sort of expressive outlet for the voters, rather than as a solemn responsibility to pick the best people to lead the country.” Do the research and vote in a way that is best for America even if it seems that you have nothing personally to gain. Because if America continues on its current course, we all have everything to lose.
On a side note, here is a suggested website for research:
<a href="http://www.realclearpolitics.com/" target="_blank">www.realclearpolitics.com</a> This is an ideal site for someone needing to gather information from all sides of the political spectrum, on a variety of different issues. The interesting thing about this site is that is simply posts links to articles from all of the major papers around the country each day, highlighting the most popular ones. News sources on here range from the liberal Huffington Post to the well-known conservative, National Review, and everything in between. Another neat feature is the stats you will find on there- Real Clear Politics simply takes the statistical average of all the polls out there to attempt to get the most accurate numbers.
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