Letter to the editor: We should all refresh ourselves about what Constitution says


Most of us don't care too much for controversy. Arguing a point is fine, but trying to have a conversation today with someone who has a different view is increasingly a challenge. Of course this doesn't even begin to touch the issue of what people really know to be true versus their opinion held like a hungry dog defending his bone.

Everyone seems to grasp that we are a very divided nation these days. We all have our ideas about when that began and who or what may or may not have played a role. All of that aside, we still must vote in five months for a president. And, for all the talk we hear, we all probably should try to refresh ourselves with what the Constitution says about the roles, responsibilities and powers of that position.

This year, as in most election years, there are two party candidates, and several others on various ballots, with one of these others polling fairly well. Apart from the unforeseen, the race will be, as usual, between a Democrat and a Republican. Both are well known. It is useless to go into the merits and demerits of either one. Both have a long list of fact and fiction surrounding who they are, how they think, what their values are, whether they like dogs and so forth.

A good suggestion would be to go back over the last 75 to 100 years and look at what these two parties have believed, argued, implemented, defended, dreamed and legislated. Since information is readily available it should not take too long to determine where each of the parties have stood.

Think about their positions on, for example, the Supreme Court, or how they have stood on the issue of abortion, or civil rights, the role of government, Vietnam, the Soviet Empire, the rise of Islamism, the matter of taxes, the existence of our border with Mexico, the nation of Israel, energy production, deficit spending, trade agreements, the rise of China, Marxist Communism, education, climate, nuclear proliferation and so forth. Think about these and any issues you might choose and decide if your values align with one party more than the other.

Both party candidates have talked and written, or had someone write for them, and spoken on all of these matters and much more. Both are flawed human beings as are we all. Both are senior citizens. Both are married. Both have children. Which one is smarter? Which one is more corrupt? Which one loves his children more? Which one? Obviously, that's the question!

When I go into the booth to vote I will have decided long before I got there. It will never be a last-minute choice. I suspect that's true for most. The choice I will have made will be based upon the Party and the individual aligned most closely with what I believe about America. And that I can summarize easily. America, in my opinion, is the best nation ever to have existed on this planet. We have shed our blood and spent our wealth time and time again to help others experience freedom and a better way of life. Through sacrifice and hard effort, we have brought that freedom to our citizens and have removed barrier after barrier to the advancement of men, women, boys and girls of all descriptions and all beliefs. Yes, I'm proud to be an American, and will never agree with those who clearly oppose my desire to be free and to believe in God with all my heart, and to share that with whomever, and whenever, my heart so leads.

Permit me to conclude with these oft quoted words from President Ronald Reagan given 20 years before he was elected in a speech to the Phoenix, Arizona, Chamber of Commerce:

"But freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. The only way they can inherit the freedom we have known is if we fight for it, protect it, defend it, and then hand it to them with the well-thought lessons of how they in their lifetime must do the same. And if you and I don't do this, then you and I may well spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it once was like in America when men were free."

I look forward to voting for the person of my choice for president. I hope you do as well!