Character Counts in our American Electoral System
October 24, 2016
Character counts in all aspects of one's life. At home, work, school, or wherever and whenever, one's character is central to one's life. And the character of the individual is the virtuous cornerstone of one's life.
We are now in the throws of a national election season. The character of the American electorate will clearly be demonstrated by its voting pattern. As we listen to and read the latest headlines, the voters are giving increasing attention to the various candidates and their position on the issues, and most importantly, on the values on which each candidate stands.The stakes are high during these very uncertain times.
There are a number of major policy issues facing the American public. Several of these issues include: national and homeland safety, security of our national borders, and the unfortunate budgetary diminution of our military. Also, on the cutting edge, are jobs and job security (just ask our recent school graduates about the jobs situation), the spiraling gloom of the economy, and the out of control national debt nearing 20 trillion dollars. Further: health care, education and common core, inefficiency of government, the Supreme Court vacancy ,our national image...and the list goes on. If ever we are in need of trustworthiness in the leadership, that time is now! Virtue in leadership is paramount.
In several previous articles, we noted the significance of "likeability" and "competence" on the part of candidates for public office. And other virtues which stand front and center are truthfulness, reliability, resourcefulness, and humility on the part of candidates. The character of honesty and humbleness are prime qualities; they are the building blocks for wise and prudent leadership. Indeed, they are the first chapter in the book of wisdom.
Without virtuous character there can be no trust. It's impossible; it can't exist. Deception is the antithesis of trustworthiness. Americans have had enough of "heartless- wonders" and "characterless word-smiths." A trustworthy person has the integrity likes a rock that is solid and unwavering. Integrity is about actions rather than just words. To be a trustworthy person, a code of conduct has meaning based upon ethical principles of human value and virtue.
We hear much these days about the character strengths and flaws of the candidates for public office including that of the Presidency of the United States. There is no room for self-centeredness and self-serving egotism on the part of candidates, each which is abhorrent to the American public. The American public is far more concerned about the seriousness of the affairs of state.
As I see it, there are certain virtuous strengths which are paramount on the part of candidates for public office. Heading the list, a candidate must possess...among other attributes... the virtues of truthfulness, trustworthiness, competence, honesty, resourcefulness, and humbleness. Indeed, these are the virtues, I believe, the American public is desperately searching for on the part of candidates for public office . Truly, these virtues make up the essential core of the American electoral system which stood the test of time in the generational annuals of American Exceptionalism. And today, dedicated thinking Americans expect no less!