As we sit here a mere twenty-something days away from the 2016 general election, I have the song “What the World Needs Now” playing over and over in my head.
“What the world needs now is love, sweet love
It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of
What the world needs now is love, sweet love
No, not just for some but for everyone”
Never have those words rang more true than in this dark chapter in our American story. The nation is completely polarized over two presidential candidates that couldn’t be more starkly different.
On the one hand, we’ve got a businessman with no political experience whatsoever. And on the other hand, a career politician that will go down in American history as the first woman to have broken through the unspoken, but always-present ceiling.
And the citizens of our nation are being called on as the interviewers to choose the candidate that they believe will be the most qualified to accept and responsibly step into the job function of President of the United States.
But somewhere along the way, it seems that folks have forgotten that we the people carry this major responsibility in the political process. This isn’t a reality show to see who can say the most outrageous thing. In fact, entertainment value isn’t even in the job description.
It’s easy for us to sit behind our keyboards and cast stones or throw around criticisms of the candidates, and forget that if we were truly taking our responsibility seriously, we as a country wouldn’t be here in the first place. We would be evaluating their abilities to step into a role that takes tremendous character, intelligence, poise and even temperament.
We would be evaluating the candidates’ stances and proposed policies to ensure that ALL Americans maintain equal rights. We would be evaluating the candidate’s knowledge and understanding of foreign policy. We would be evaluating the candidate’s knowledge and understanding of our constitution. We would be evaluating their plans to make sure that the needs of the men and women that have risked their lives fighting for our freedoms are taken care of.
The LGBT community is well-known for embracing and embodying sentiments like, “love always wins” or “love trumps hate.” And we’ve always been at the forefront for leading the charge to right wrongs and champion justice when injustices have been committed. Why? Because at the very core of everything we do, everything we pursue, everything we want, is love.
We’ve got a very big opportunity to once again lead by example when it comes to this election. If love is at our core, that means that we put love of our country, love of our fellow Americans, love of this land we call home, love of people seeking a better life by coming here, ahead of all else.
If, and only if we approach our interviewing responsibility from that perspective, will we be able to choose the candidate that we think will best be able to accomplish what’s needed for the job of our next President of the United States.
Note that the opinions expressed above are those of the author, and not necessarily reflective of the GLBX or the Greater Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce.