Monday, October 10, 2016


I'm referring to the current presidential election campaign in the U.S.  First a disclaimer: I am a U.S. citizen, married to a Canadian citizen and have lived in Canada for the last 49 years, except for a 4 1/2 year interval from 1978 to 1983 when we lived in Oregon.  I do not vote in the U.S. elections.  When we first lived in Canada in 1967 I looked into becoming registered to vote, and it seemed an impossibly complicated process.  Not being a very politically motivated person at the time, I gave it up.  I have the privilege of being a Permanent Resident of Canada.  I grew up in a completely Republican conservative milieu in Michigan.  I have loyalties to both countries and think that both the U.S. and Canada are great countries, wonderful and blessed places to live.  I'm grateful to be here, part-time in Canada and part-time in the U.S.

I've watched the political process in the U.S. decay over the last 20 or so years, and considered the rise of the far-right in the Republican party with dismay.  The same can be said of the rise of the extreme "right" of the Protestant wing of Christianity.  And I think the two are related.  It seems to me that both wings are not grounded in Scripture (by which, as a Christian, I mean the Bible) nor are they grounded in history.  Such ignorance unmoors them, making them, as St. Paul said, "blown to and fro by every stray wind of doctrine," and I would add, every stray lie and controversy.

Along with millions of others we have watched the development of this campaign with interest and alarm.  We've never seen anything like the depths to which the political discourse has descended.  The only thing comparable in politics that I can remember is the whole Watergate schmozzle when the country was appalled by the web of lies and deceit that was uncovered in the highest levels of government.  Bill Clinton's infidelities and lies come a close second.  So you can't blame either the Democrat or Republican side for this atrocity.  There's enough shame to cover both sides.

Last night's debate was a sad, discouraging affair.  I'm very sad that Hillary engaged in the back and forth accusations.  I had hoped that she would, as she said, Take the high road, resolutely refusing to lower to the back and forth accusations that we heard yesterday.  I had hoped that she would absolutely stick to positive statements of her record--she has a solid record of service and achievement--and a solid, positive explanation of her plans to rectify the deep problems and divisions dragging the great country of America down into the gutter, embarrassing all of us before the world.  That's what I look for from those who would lead this country.

So I'm sad today.

The encouraging thing that we find when we spend time in the U.S., a period of months each year, is that the vast majority of people we meet here are wonderful, kind, and even righteous.

If you care to enter this discussion, please post a comment.  If you can't do that, please mail your comments to me at

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