On Friday President Obama told his supporters “Voting is the best revenge”.
I participated in my first campaign by wearing buttons to the 6th grade in 1968, voted for the first time in 1976, volunteered or worked as paid staff in more than a dozen congressional, senate or presidential campaigns, paid close attention to all of the races for the past 40 years, watched every primary and general election debate this campaign season and tried to keep up with as many articles, blog posts, ads, editorials etc as humanly possible. In all of that, I have never heard as sad a commentary on the state of political discourse as the President of the United States advocating voting as an act of revenge.
How do we govern our communities from the smallest hamlet to the nation itself if the process of choosing our leaders is seen by the victors as an opportunity to revenge themselves on the vanquished? How do we come together following an election to gain popular acceptance of public policy if the defeated have heard the Chief Executive assure his followers that by supporting him those policies will become the instrument of their revenge?
Is this really what our nation has come to? What possible offense fills people’s hearts with such hatred for their fellow citizens that they would cheer with joy when told “Voting is the best revenge.”
Most of the people on Govloop are public employees, who tend to lean left of center. I’ve read some pretty angry, almost hateful, commentary on The Left Bank Discussion group. But I have yet to read anyone advocating choosing our leaders as an act of revenge.
So what do Govloopers think about this premise? Is voting really the best revenge?