Two of my daughters have expressed an interest in joining the Debate Team at our high school. The older of the two has already taken a debate class and the younger one is now enrolled in that class. Today they will meet with the teacher that sponsors the team and will decide if they want to pursue joining.
This has brought up some interesting subjects as my younger daughter has been relating the subjects that students are interested in debating. Some of those subjects include the shortened lunch hour, the open campus policy, and other school related issues. General subjects have included abortion, same-sex marriage, the war in Iraq, and current Presidential candidates.
Last night my daughter and I discussed Mitt Romney. She commented that people won't vote for him simply based on his religion. People claim that his religion will influence his decisions and that his private life will most defintely affect his ability to effectively serve in our country's highest office. I find this position so interesting because 8-10 years ago, these same people vehemently defended the then current president's right to do whatever he wanted in his private life (even when it included immoral activities in the Oval Office) and claimed that his private life had absolutely nothing to do with his public life or his ability to stand as head of our country. Hmmm. Interesting how people will flip-flop depending on how it suits them.
Does someone's private acts affect his/her public acts? Should we, as voters, be concerned with what a candidate does in his/her private time? I must answer: Absolutely. What we do in private, especially when we think no one is watching, shows who we are at our very core. Someone who conducts himself or herself differently in private than in public, is not an honest person and does not have integrity. Only when our behavior is consistent, privately and publicly, can we be considered to have integrity.
I do not want my elected officials to be one kind of person in private and a different kind of person in public. I much prefer people who are "what you see is what you get" kind of people, even if I disagree with them, because I know they are consistent and I know what to expect.
I remember girls in high school who would act like they were your best friend to your face and as soon as you turned your back, they'd shred you to bits. I much prefer people to be honest and upfront. I can agree to disagree, but it's difficult to know where I stand with someone who isn't honestly portraying himself/herself.
Wouldn't it be nice if all of our candidates for the upcoming Presidential election would just be honest? We could vote for who we feel best represents our views and know that "what we see is what we'll get."