“Never try to teach pigs to sing; It’s a waste of time and it annoys the pigs.”
There is less than a week to go until I am allowed to regain control over my telephone, doorbell, and mailbox. Each of them has been pestered to death by politicians eager to take their place passing out stolen loot in exchange for votes.
In some respects the nearly two-year long political theatre and orchestrations have been amusing.
For example, I recently got to watch the face of a young and eager Leonard Boswell worker screw into signs of intestinal discomfort when I told her I would not be voting for her chosen one, or anyone at all.
“You don’t vote? Why not?”
“I don’t vote and neither should you. It’s immoral. It’s giving permission to politicians to steal in your name and then pass out the stolen wealth to the people who voted for them.”
“Well, that’s how a democracy works.” She had uttered one of the holy words intended to cow the listener into doing the unconscionable act of appointing proxy thieves into office.
“A democracy is mob rule. You are African-American. Your vaunted democracy once issued edicts that you were not a human being. And, as a Jew, there are certain professions I am prohibited from engaging in. I cannot deal in human servitude. Yet, if I vote, I am voting for someone else to confiscate the labor of another person and convert it to my use. You don’t like the idea of slavery, do you?”
The young woman shifted nervously and her fingers played over the handful of literature clutched in them.
“Can I leave this literature in case you change your mind?”
“No. It is disturbing that you would hope I would abandon my conscience. In Buddhism, part of the Eightfold Path is ‘right livelihood’. It also prohibits dealing in arms, human servitude, or any occupation violating ‘right speech’ and ‘right action’. Even if you embrace no religion, the obligations and truths of Buddhism apply to us all. It is my hope that you’ll change your mind and not vote too. Not voting is the ethical and moral choice.”
“Well, I’d think about it. Won’t you think about voting?”
“I have. The answer remains ‘no’. And you?”
She smiled nervously. “I don’t completely understand your position.”
“But you’ll think about it?”
“Yeah. I guess. We’ll just have to agree to disagree for now.”
I smiled broadly, “There it is!”
The threat I received in my mailbox later that same day was not as reasonable as the youthful and eager campaign worker.
“VOTE HISTORY AUDIT ENCLOSED”
The Americans for Limited Government had ‘audited’ my voting record and, allegedly, those of my neighbors. The results were enclosed.
I proudly noted that I had not voted since about 2004. Neither had my spouse and at least one of my neighbors.
“Our American democracy is stronger because of civic-minded citizens like you.”
Why, thank you!
Ooops. I spoke too soon. The Americans for Limited Government are not for limited government. Why, they love government and the state…
…as long as ‘conservatives’ are running it.
The ‘audit’ promised to send an updated voting history to me and my neighbors after the “expected high turnout” for the upcoming (s)election. The audit was, in fact, a thinly veiled act of coercion for me to “continue your participation and exercise your right and responsibility (emphasis added)” to vote.
“We’re watching. We have appointed ourselves as guardians of democracy.” I was to be free in democratic America, so long as I participated in the organized looting of my neighbors.
Crusaders similarly led non-believers to the “loving arms of Christ” at the point of the sword.
I thought about contacting the Americans for Limited Government to point out their oxymoronic reasoning.
Then, I remembered a saying my father (z”l) was fond of: “Never try to teach pigs to sing; It’s a waste of time and it annoys the pigs.”
The ‘audit’ went into the bin, alongside the day’s takings of candidate mailings.
On Tuesday, do the moral and ethical thing…