As I prepare to go out to vote for the next President of these great United States, I consider all of the issues that every other citizen is considering: foreign policy, social programs, equality and civil rights, economics, etc. And while all of these issues are important, I keep remembering a life lesson shared by my grandmother. “Kindness,” she would say, “is the most important thing.”
I think about which candidate will demonstrate the most kindness. Who is more likely to embrace the marginalized, to work for the disenfranchised? Who will work for those of all backgrounds, all races and ethnicities, all religions, sexual preferences, gender identities? Who will work to promote respect and equality for all people in the country? Who sends a message that I want our children to believe in? I want a president who conducts himself/herself with class and dignity, who does not unravel.
On occasion, I have felt like punching people or telling them to perform certain acts on themselves. I have been angry. It could be at my boss, it could be at my family, it could be at other drivers. However, I don’t give in to the most based part of my character and indulge those temptations. Obviously I don’t want to lose my job or get shot in traffic but I keep it together for a more important reason: I want to believe I’m better than that. I may picture myself saying or doing something and may even get some pleasure from that idea but I don’t do it. If I did, what would my grandmother say? What would the children I teach think? What would that say about me?
I want a president who will model the very best of who we are. I want more kindness. In fact, I insist upon it.