Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Unanswered Questions

It is time we consider some of the underling questions that the media conveniently hasn’t addressed during this election cycle. We must remember that we don’t live under a regime where top offices are stolen by shrewd political manipulation. We live in a republic, where the presidency goes to the leader who wins the hearts and minds of voters. In an environment of free speech, statesmen compete to sell their intellectual treatises to the public.

I mean, voters actually spend money on politicians’ books! Nonetheless, while we listen to sound bites touting the great differences between candidates and search the candidates' memoirs for evidence, we should also remember the ways in which our options are defined and limited. While Obama became a millionaire with Dreams from my Father, McCain revealed his views with Faith of my Fathers. They both wrote about their fathers!! What about their mothers? And let’s face it. Is there really that much of a difference between dreams and faith?

But all cynicism aside, in every election, we have the moral responsibility of ignoring hangups based on idealistic fantasies (dreams and faith, you might say) and choosing the best of all options. Nonetheless, I think we need to ask: is America ready for a Hawaiian president? I mean, I know our nation has come a long way since the 50th state was added to the Union in 1959 and I have no doubt in my mind that Americans born outside of the continental US are just as American as everyone else, but there are a lot of ignorant people in this country. And those ignorant people may ask: what next? A Puerto Rican president? Representatives from every country disproportionately influenced by the American government?

Do you really think continental Americans will let an islander win? Hawaii is pretty far into the Pacific, much closer to Asia then the rest of the United States and much of Hawaii claims Asian descent. But most importantly, what will happen when people actually start looking at Hawaii’s state flag and realize that it contains the union jack? We all remember what happened in Georgia. Do Hawaiians secretly maintain allegiance to the British Empire? That empire expanded until the sun didn't set on the land it controlled...and look at it today. Might that be a bad example?

If we elect someone more representative of the world than of the Brady Bunch, we may risk losing our belief of having ended history and having achieved the purest, more perfect socio-political system. We may have to acknowledge that everybody isn’t the same and that the whole world no longer wishes they could be like us.

As we move forward during this historic moment, we must be sure that we press politicians to address the real issues at play and we must not get wrapped up in petty politics and cheap sensational news coverage.