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It's Voting Season!

It’s voting season!

For most people that sentence strikes a chord of disdain. The negativity, the debates, the postcards—“Oh, the humanity!”

Admittedly, as a history and political science major, I kind of like it. I think it takes courage to look around you and say, I think I can make this better. So I don’t mind the pomp and circumstance surrounding election season. And I strongly advocate for all US citizens to take full advantage of their voting rights. And I’ll tell you why:

Our founding document, the Declaration of Independence reads:

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Time-out. Quick aside. I’ve heard it said that we’re not a Christian nation, and that the founding fathers never intended us to be. Perhaps. But when you read the above 2 paragraphs you can clearly see that our country is at minimum a religious one. Certainly I can’t prove that when these men are referring to “Nature’s God” or the “Creator” that they were referring to the Christian God of the Bible, but nonetheless they were recognizing that something bigger than themselves gave them rights—and that government’s primary responsibility is to protect those rights.

But back to my point. Why should you vote. Do you know what “inalienable” means? It means unable to be taken away by anyone or given away by the possessor. So in the context of this sentence from our founding document, endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, it means God has given me rights that no man can take away, and neither can I give them away.

Now let me ask you, has man begun taking these rights away? Have we given them away? Lets check:

1. Life - according to the Declaration every person has the right to life. We can’t give that right away, and nobody can take that right from us. Yet abortion is not only legal, but it's celebrated as a human right. Euthanasia is gaining momentum and is now legal in some countries including certain states within the United States.

2. Liberty - according to our boys at Merriam Webster, liberty is defined as the freedom from arbitrary governmental control including the right to speak freely. Has this been taken away? Uh, yeah. By not voting are you giving this right away? Clearly so.

3. The Pursuit of Happiness - see above

Why should you vote? Because the Declaration reads: whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

The reason why you should vote is because that right can’t be given away. It’s your responsibility to institute a new government when the current one becomes destructive. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out we’re heading down a destructive path.

Christians, might I submit to you, it is our time to speak up. Be courageous. Go vote your conscience. Don’t give me any lip about “lesser of two evils”. You choose the lesser of two evils every day of your life. Wendy’s or McDonald’s? Pepsi or Coke? Unleaded or Super Unleaded? Nothing in this world is perfect.

Furthermore, don’t talk to me about how your vote doesn’t matter. According to Barna 25 million self-identifying Christians didn’t vote in the 2012 election and the final vote was decided by about 4 million votes—simple math shows that’s a fallacy.

It’s voting season. Go make the most of it.