BY SHARON MARTIN
Say you are pro-life. You want to stop abortions, but you don’t want sex education. You don’t want your taxes paying for birth control. You want to close the Planned Parenthood in your town, the only source of healthcare for some women and a fighter against the spread of STDs. Think about that for a while.
You’re pro-unregulated Second Amendment, never mind what the Constitution says. You’ve never broken a law in your life, but you don’t want to have to pass a background check because it infringes on your rights. How about the right to safe schools? The answer isn’t more guns. If that were the case, the United States would be the safest country on earth.
You want to do something about the ravages of drugs and drug addiction on our culture. Good. That means you want to see drug courts and treatment programs expanded and affordable. And you want access to mental health care for everyone. Who pays for it?
You want cuts on income taxes? That benefits the wealthy. When revenues fail because of income tax loopholes, political favors, and other giveaways, they’ll have to nickel and dime the rest of us with fees and sales tax increases.
What if I told you that an increase in income tax, especially on large incomes, would equate to a higher standard of living for the average person in the state? What if I told you that the states that spend the most money on education have the highest per capita income?
How about religious freedom? Is that your issue? Do you believe that religious freedom extends to all religions or just yours? Which religion? If you want a Christian theocracy, will it be Protestant or Catholic? Baptist or Lutheran? Who gets to decide what you have to believe?
The issues overlap in ways we can see and in ways that we can’t. The thing is, we are all better off when there are no hunger zones, no pockets of hopelessness, no groups underemployed because of a lack of education.
Ask any candidate one question: do you think the promises of the Constitution and the opportunities of a Democratic Republic should be accessible to every citizen? If they can’t properly answer that, start asking about single issues. Chances are, they won’t have good answers about those either.
Finally, ask them who is funding their run for office. That’s where you’ll find their priorities.
Funding! That may be the single issue we should all be voting on.
– Sharon Martin lives in Oilton, OK and is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer