Friday, February 6, 2015

How to Select the Next President of the United States



So Mitt Romney’s not running. Hillary Clinton probably is. And the field of Republican candidates who are testing waters, to various degrees, stands in the double digits. How to choose wisely?

As tempting as an “anybody but Obama” mentality might seem, the better rationale – the one that could very well prove the solution to this nation’s political ills – is to consider first and foremost: God.

That’s an odious idea to many, and not just atheists. Plenty of believers still don’t think religion and politics mix; plenty would argue that religion belongs in church and politicians have no business bringing, say, the Bible into their public offices.

But we’re not talking Bible-thumping here. It’s not about preaching the word of God – it’s about living it. It’s about abiding age-old moral precepts and values that don’t change with the times – that have been set in stone by a higher authority – and that teach generation upon generation such ideals as thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not commit false witness; thou shalt not covet.

Or, how about the godly teachings of remaining humble, and putting service to others above service to self?

Those are qualities and traits that are in dire need on Capitol Hill. Just look at the current White House makeup: Would a president who abided the biblical teaching against lying tell an American public that Obamacare wouldn’t change their doctor? Would a president who actually put service to constituents above the quest for legacy even have shoved Obamacare into law -- or continued to shove it despite the many start-up fails – and dismissed all the poor poll showings and numerous legislative attempts at repeal?

First and foremost, the next president needs to hold himself – or herself – accountable to a higher authority. Why? Because we certainly can’t rein in a runaway president; just look at Obama and his many executive abuses. We need a leader who has the moral maturity and humility of spirit to self-monitor and re-direct as prayerfully prompted.

This is not a new notion for U.S. politicians. One of America’s most iconic images is of George Washington, on bended knee at Valley Forge, in an act of humble prayer.

The idea of a higher authority guiding our nation’s government has been rooted in our system from the start. As most Founding Fathers agreed: The fate of the nation’s freedom rested in the morality of the people.

John Adams: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

Fisher Ames: “Our liberty depends on our education, our law, and habits … it is founded on morals and religion.”

Patrick Henry: “Bad men cannot make good citizens. It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains. A vitiated state of morals, a corrupted public conscience, is incompatible with freedom. No free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue.”

Good morals, virtuous beliefs, as defined by God – these are the traits we need to look for first in our nation’s presidents. Secondary are their public policy platforms. For a quick cheat-sheet at the polls, just remember this: “Bad men cannot make good citizens,” and sub in the word “leaders” for “citizens.” Politicians who don’t live by a higher moral code and hold themselves accountable to an omnipresent authority – whether Democrat or Republican – are a dime a dozen already. Why should we elect more?

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