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Respecting public servants

October 27, 2012
Messenger News

To the editor:

With every election cycle I have the following fantasy: placing as many candidate signs in my yard as possible, from office-seekers of both major political parties, but also from those claiming other political affiliations: Libertarian, Peace and Freedom, Green Party, etc.

Why would I think of doing such a thing, you ask? You surely can't be in favor of all of the candidates and must finally, like everyone else, decide to cast your ballot for only one of them per office.

While it is true I am partial to some candidates over others and can't vote for everyone who is running without invalidating my ballot, I also reserve the right to favor and respect anyone who is willing to enter public service and the modern political fray. The vast majority of people running for office are sincere, dedicated individuals, hoping to make a positive difference and seeking the common good.

They place themselves and their families under the often harsh glare of public scrutiny, where everything they do or have ever done is fair game for the press, the pundits, and their partisan opponents.

They work hard every day to support themselves and their families, but also find the time to take on leadership roles in their communities, even run for higher office.

I think it's high time to give credit to the elected public servants of our community, those civic-minded souls that sacrifice so much on our behalf and enrich our society in so many ways.

One of the baptismal promises we make in our faith tradition is to "strive for justice and peace among all people and respect the dignity of every human being." (Book of Common Prayer, page 305). Those who serve or would serve us in the public arena are often trying to breathe life into this promise.

True, we can't vote for them all.

But we can still respect them.

The Rev. Richard Graves


St. Mark's Episcopal Church

Fort Dodge



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