On some levels, I can not believe I am penning this post. When I titled this "Evolution," I was not talking about Darwin's theory; I was talking about me. As a child, I was reared in a republican home, although I never remember being indoctrinated. It was just obvious my parents were republicans, and as children often do, I grew up voting the same way. Ronald Reagan was my not only my first President I voted for (1984), but I count him as the best in my lifetime. I still attribute the decline of communism and the break-up of the Soviet Bloc to him.
Yet......fast forward over thirty years. The world has changed, but more importantly, the United States has changed. In my youth I was oblivious to social agendas. In the last few years, it has become impossible for me to close my eyes to the suffering around me. Perhaps it is more pronounced as the population of poor and homeless has skyrocketed. With the advent of the internet, the economic downfall of many is plastered everywhere. Whenever I seek out news articles, it is easier to find stories of the onslaught of tent cities or articles of homeless people who have been attacked or killed by youth. So many Americans are literally one paycheck away from being homeless. How can people turn their backs? There, but for the grace of God.......
So, in this election year, I am aghast at the slate of republican candidates offering themselves for President. Many spew hate-filled, paranoid speech against those seeking better lives in America. What happened to "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free....."? I remember having to memorize the Emma Lazarus inscription in a high school English class in the late '70s. Aside from that, I have to think, "What would Jesus do?" Would He approve of most of what He would be hearing today? THAT and only THAT is driving how I plan to vote this time around. For that reason, I will NOT be voting for a republican.
For the first time in my life, I will be voting in the Democratic Primary and casting that vote for Bernie Sanders. Thirty years ago, I would have laughed if anyone told me that I would be voting for someone of his political persuasion. However, I am not the same person, and when I look at the social needs of my country, I can not vote for a republican, and I believe we need some radical change---the kind of change he promulgates. He may not make it to the Democratic nomination, but he has my vote in the primary.