The phrase “May you live in interesting times” is purported to have originated from China, though that’s doubtful. It certainly can describe this year’s presidential race.
Regardless of whom you are voting for in national and state elections — and you really should vote — there are non-partisan resources on candidates, issues and more.
Who’s running? In a 2015 poll, only 35 percent could name one of their state senators. If you only know candidates by their party affiliation, find out more. Match your views with a presidential quiz such as ISideWith.com or VoteSmart.org’s Vote Easy feature that also includes congressional races with all the parties. Candidate stands on 71 issues - along with another candidate quiz - can be found at ProCon.org.
What’s on the ballot? Ballotpedia.org includes other races and ballot measures coming up. Your secretary of state’s office should also have sample ballots available.
Can you vote? There are videos providing registration and voting guidelines for every state at tinyurl.com/VoteInMyState or usa.gov/register-to-vote. To check on your status, polling location and identification requirements, visit CanIVote.org. Students can find instructions at Campus Vote Project.
What’s the truth? Do you recall the attention given to the article on the satirical site The End Times that Southern Baptists were planning to build mosques? Many Christians looked foolish because they became upset rather than investigate a story that didn’t seem very probable.
Don’t blindly believe everything you see in print or on a monitor. Excellent non-biased fact-checking resources are PolitiFact (PolitiFact.com), with its Truth-o-Meter, and FactCheck.org, which includes a video guide to “Key Characteristics of Bogusness” (tinyurl.com/BogusnessKeys). Snopes (snopes.com) is the best site to debunk misinformation and rumors. Or see news from across the political spectrum at allsides.com.
Where’s the money? Millions of dollars and special interests can influence politics. Depending on your interests, you can research money’s role in elections and in legislation at FollowtheMoney.org, OpenSecrets.org or MapLight.org.
State your case, wisely. Your opinions as a citizen should take a back seat to your Kingdom allegiance. Even if you are correct, don’t be so partisan as to ruin a relationship. Ryan Jespersen shares a four-point guide at tinyurl.com/4HealthyResponses.
Ken Satterfield is a former media specialist and currently the advertising/marketing coordinator for Word & Way.