Not Defeated

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As the election raged on and emotions were high I found myself deeply thankful for all of my friends. Democrats and Republicans alike. I started thinking of what I’d say if my candidate lost. And what I’d say if he won.  When the results came in. I found myself sending love notes and thoughts of thanks to those who voted differently from me. Because with all of the mud slinging going on, I found my timelines on both Twitter and Facebook virtually mud-free. I did not feel like we were divided. Rather, I felt like we knew we needed to come together after the votes were counted. I am looking to us mamis to unite this country once again. We do everything else, right? This is my way of beginning the healing process.

MamaDweeb and I have been friends on The Twitter for quite some time now. Then, I finally got to hug her at the Niche Mommy conference. I’ve been in love with her ever since. When I saw this Tweet, I had to reach out to her.

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After a little back and forth where she spoke nothing but the truth (about the president having his work cut out for him) I asked her if she would write a post to share with you all. Here is my friend Annie, who I love and respect dearly, with her own thoughts on the election.

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I voted for Mitt Romney. I wanted to see change and in my research and in my heart, I decided Mitt's values aligned with my own. I haven't enjoyed watching this country experience so much frustration, struggle, and digression in the past four years. I didn't vote for Obama the first time and I exercised my blessed ability to vote this time too.

But you know what? This is not the end. This is not the beginning. This is our life, our continuing to carve out the best possible life for us and our families.  This is America and I have hope that even if our favorite candidates are not elected, we still have a powerful voice and an ability to effect real change.

As a blogger, I can create a huge movement. You know Prop 37 in California? Much of the campaigning for it was done by bloggers, writers and vloggers. Real change will occur as we vote with our dollar, educate each other with knowledgable sources and act on our beliefs with compassion towards others.

Continue to live with a purpose. No matter what happens, I respect President Obama and meanwhile I will be raising my children with my values and teaching them to live out their beliefs with empathy and passion. Will you join me? As long as we have freedoms and a voice, we can still make change!

About the author:

Annie Shultz is the owner of MamaDweeb.com. She lives in Kansas with her husband, 3 kids, dog cat and chickens.  She is always on Twitter @MamaDweeb and loves to chat about issues that weigh on her heart, always looking up optimistically.

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My Vote Counts

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“ No self respecting woman should wish or work for the success of a party that ignores her sex” – Susan B. Anthony

I voted early. I voted my conscience on all items of the ballot, not just the presidential race. Like Michelle from Think In Color Now, I voted for my daughter.

So many of my favorite bloggers have already said what I felt that I’m going to simply tell you to go visit them because I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Deborah over at Motherhood the Truth talked about how she was voting solely on the issue of women’s rights this year and man, do I agree!

Jill from Scary Mommy talked about her reasons for voting and again, she said so many of the things that I think I feel.

I want my daughter to be paid the same as your son.

I want my friends who have kids with disabilities (or who have disabilities themselves) to have good healthcare in spite of their pre-existing conditions.

I don’t care who my child marries, so long as she is happy, she should have the similar rights regardless of who she chooses to love.

I don’t want anyone’s daughter to be put at risk because they are not allowed to make choices for their own bodies, even if that decision differs from my own.

I became a naturalized citizen at age 22 and have not missed a presidential election ever since. Why? Because I feel that people fought and died for my right to vote. So much is riding on this election. And not just the presidential candidates.

In Florida, we have an amendment that is trying to waive a women’s right to privacy.  There’s an amendment that will allow funds to go to religious sects though the amendment is very vague as to who will decide what organizations will qualify for my funds. And there is an amendment that directly opposes the Affordable Healthcare Act because, you know, it’s totally constitutional for a state to secede from federal law.

I don’t urge you to vote like I did, though I wouldn’t be mad at you. BUT, I want you to get out and VOTE regardless of whether you agree with me.

This morning, I went out to canvass in a neighborhood close to my house. These are my stories (insert Law & Order bum bum here)…

1. I ran into an older Argentinian man who proudly flew an American flag in front of his apartment. He showed me his credentials as being part of the democratic party. He was jolly and happy and more than willing to let me know who was home and who was not. He was also very errr, complimentary of how I looked. Told me that another canvasser had come by from DR as well but she was a bit older whereas I was…tender. That’s the word he used! Old guy, thanks for the compliment, for your vote and for the creepy feeling.

2. I knocked on a door and a young woman opened. I asked for the person on my list and she told me that her mom happened to have been out to vote right at that moment. I smiled, checked her off my list and asked her if she had an idea of who she had voted for. She smiled at me and told me that she was voting Democratic. But then she also told me that they were having an election party because she was a strong Republican. I loved the pleasant and respectful chat I had with her. I thanked her for voting, patted her dog and went about my way feeling great about the interaction and hoping to the sweet baby Jesus that my house is never divided. Also, I was secretly hoping she’d invite me to the party so I could see how that went.

3. Finally, I was making my way down the last side of one of my streets. I spotted an older couple smoking outside of their apartment on the 2nd floor. I climbed the stairs, said good morning and went to the door listed on my sheet. I heard whispers. After a few minutes of waiting and no answer at the door, I left the card on the door reminding the person of their poll location. As I walked back, I wished the couple, now looking at me with a mixture of hatred and…disgust, a good day. They mumbled something else and I went down the stairs.

As I was walking away I heard “There’s no soliciting here. This is private property.” not to my face but mumbled to my back along with some other comments that I did not hear but could imagine.

See, I've been in Florida for a long, long time. And the undertone of racism can creep up in the same way that the afternoon summer storms can settle in the sky. With little notice and with great intensity. I walked away and chose not to finish my job on that side of the street.

I also vote because I’m hoping that my child never has to deal with that. That people won’t mumble names under their breath or worse yet, shout them to her face. Not that voting the way I voted will change that but, I am praying that with each move forward, we can leave those things behind.

Have you voted in this election?