Let’s hold faith, love for our country

I imagine that we all feel it, a great uneasiness regarding the upcoming election. Families are pitted against their own members, and many feel hopeless about the prospects of our country. Perhaps this article will give you hope.

This morning, I saw a post from Facebook friend Julie DeCosta Kajiwara that said, “Faith tells me that no matter what lies ahead, God is already there.” I felt my body sigh and relax a bit. So thanks Julie! We can all pray. I’m sure that the whole world is praying for the very best outcome for the great and influential United States of America. Our government is a major player in the world. We need someone who can help lift this world into a more peaceful, compassionate place.

It might help to know the president’s job. This is the oath that he must affirm before he takes office: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” “So help me God” is an optional ending, which Obama stated.

To preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States is his/her job. The Constitution’s preamble, or main idea, states, “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

The president is our head of state, and commander-in-chief of the armed forces. He/she is responsible for implementing and enforcing the laws written by Congress to help insure the preamble is served. To that end, he/she appoints the heads of the federal agencies, including the Cabinet, and 50 independent federal commissions, as well as federal judges, ambassadors and other federal offices. He/she also works with the CIA, EPA, Social Security Admnistration and Securities Exchange Commission. There are about 4,000,000 employees in the executive branch, including the armed forces.

The president has the power either to sign legislation into law or to veto bills enacted by Congress, although Congress may override a veto with a two-thirds vote of both houses. Congress can create a wall by not supporting bills introduced at the request of the president.

So “We the People’s” job is to make sure that those we send to Congress as senators and representatives truly represent the will of the people. We are very much aware that Congress votes along party lines, and not necessarily for what they think is the right choice for the people they represent. There is also concern that legislators are bought by special-interest groups, and there is evidence supporting that.

This has all got to stop. “We the People” have to pay attention. It may yet be Bernie Sanders’ gift that he loudly represents creating laws that benefit the majority of the people. He’s empowered many to hold their congressional leaders accountable for their actions, and that if they don’t help the majority, then they need to be voted out. We’ll see what happens when people vote for their legislators next week.

Our job is to pay attention, and if we are aware of misdoings, we must act. We should check the criminal records of our potential lawmakers. Do they follow the laws themselves? Do they think they are above the law?

There is also a lot of concern at our local level of politics. Listen very carefully to what our council candidates are saying. Do they seem to represent special interests? Are they concerned for the general welfare for all? How do they treat each other? Are they respectful? Honest? Intelligent? Can they make good decisions for us? Will they go the distance?

We are blessed to live on Kauai, and one of the joys of it is that so many people know each other. We usually listen to each other. Truth comes out in the end. We don’t want to have a bad feeling against anyone, because sooner or later, we’ll see them again. We can make things right with others if we have a grievance. And that doesn’t mean that we write a long list of all the things wrong with another person. It means that we get with that other person, and a neutral one if we need to, and talk things out as if you lived and believed that all men are created equal, and that we are meant to love our neighbors as ourselves.

Our government is made up of We the People. When enough people begin to think like that, then our government leaders will be elected because they think like that, and many of the things people bicker about will drop away. We just won’t tolerate corruption, selling people harmful food, treating criminals like animals, etc. We’ll treat them the way we want to be treated.

Many of our great spiritual leaders didn’t worry about politics. They knew that there is a higher order of things. Divine law trumps man-made laws, and that divine law is written right into our hearts and souls. We know when we are off. And we can always make it right and get back on to living from Divine Truth. When we do that, we are swimming with the current, and we will thrive. When we don’t, we swim against the current, and eventually become exhausted and/or ill and depressed.

No matter what lies ahead God is already there, and loves His children equally. Substitute “Love” for “God” if you like. I’m envisioning a perfect election, even though I don’t know what that will be. In God we trust!

Questions?

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Please email your questions or concerns facing our youth and families today to Annaleah Atkinson at aatkinson@haleopio.org For more information about Hale ‘Opio Kaua’i, please go to www.haleopio.org

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