In my life, I was able to participate in four presidential elections, wasted no time and made sure that I exercised my right to vote as early as I could at 18. So you see, I’ve had my fair share of wins and losses, a 50 percent batting average, with the most recent loss being the most painful and regrettable one.
And this is exactly what brought me to pick-up my pen again after a year of disinterest in most things that used to spark joy. I felt that I had to do something within my capacity. The urge is insatiable. The outcome of the next presidential elections will surely bring me to tears, whatever the outcome. That is how crucial this is. This is where the rubber meets the road.
I have followed a simple process in sifting my candidates and coming up with THE ONE. It’s easy, really. Think of one thing, just ONE thing… I.S.A.
Introspect. What are the values you hold most important to you? The values that you try your best to follow in living your life. Your life manual. These are your virtues. Dig deep and rank them according to importance. What are your non-negotiables? Is it truthfulness and trustworthiness? Since after all, public office is a public trust, isn’t it? Or fairness? That all people be treated equally, with dignity, and for human rights to be upheld at all costs. Or patriotism? There is a reason why the country you were born in is called your motherland, and everyone and his mother love their mothers. No pun intended.
Scrutinize. Put each candidate under the microscope like a virus, stifling the bad ones to keep them from mutating into trolls. Dissect them like frogs, look into their hearts. Investigate and review their track records. How many of their promises were they able to keep? Do they practice what they preach? Do they keep their word? How do they conduct themselves in public? Are they presidentiable? Remember, they’re running for the presidency and not auditioning for The Voice or So You Think You Can Dance and certainly not for the cast of Dynasty. Are they partisan? Do they toe the line all the time? What was their stand on important national issues? Remember that important national issues are litmus tests, a sure way of spotting rotten eggs. And we don’t want rotten eggs, do we?
Align. Now that you have identified your virtues and examined your candidates, the seemingly daunting task of coming up with THE ONE hopefully has become lighter. And your confidence in getting the answer to the question right, a lot higher. Unfortunately, for this exercise, there are right and wrong answers. At this point, ask yourself, who among these candidates best represents me? Is this person someone I’d love for my children to try and emulate as a life peg? Because, really, what’s the point of supporting someone whom you censor from your children? It’s counterintuitive. This is something I really can’t wrap my head around. If you’re someone who does this, kindly send me a note, I would really love to hear from you. After all, this is, still, a free country where all opinions are respected and heard, right? Will my choice make my momma proud?
At the end of the day, remember, you are the reflection of your life choices. You are your vote. But first, go out and register today. And then go out and vote wisely in 2022. Make it count. Get it right. – Alvin G. Santos, email@example.com
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