While on pilgrimage in Ireland, I fasted from news.
I didn’t log on or pick up newspapers. It was intentional.
I’m invested in this upcoming election. Beyond the electing of the President and others running for office (no small thing) are two issues that seem to me to define who we are as Minnesotans in community: the (anti) marriage amendment and the effort being made to restrict access to voting.
Should Minnesota voters vote “yes” on either issue, the numbers of people who will be uninvited from living in community is staggering.
I cannot comprehend that the love of same gender persons who make family together is so “dangerous” that Minnesotans must contort our Constitution to legislate oppression.
I cannot comprehend that Minnesotans would willy-nilly make it more difficult for anyone who stirs themselves to care about our public life to make their voice heard at the polls. Reading the fine print of implications of this voter restriction is essential. The people affected are the young, those serving our country, the elderly and the disproportionate numbers of non-whites who do not have a photo id. The statistics concerning past voter fraud are laughable. There are few cases proven. There is no sinister band of folk seeking to rig an election through voter fraud.
There does seem to be a move afoot to “protect” the state of Minnesota from those who are not straight Scandinavians.
See what I mean? I’m concerned about these issues and the impact the vote will have on our sense of who we are together.
Already I’m making plans for where I will be on election night. It feels immense, this time of casting of votes and defining of values. I am checking in with my children, each of whom is phone banking and door knocking as the day of casting ballots nears. I want to be sure they are in good company on election night.
As for me, I’ll be at the home of dear friends. We will eat jello and share the decisions made by our neighbors.
In the meantime, I’ll remember the ten day news fast as gift and as reminder; the world commences without my heart being pummeled by newspapers and defining votes.
And, I’ll bring my heart and my voice into conversations and prayer for the opening of hearts here in Minnesota.