Rick Patrick: Greene Publishing, Inc.
When I started writing for our weekly visits, I made a promise to myself that I would make every effort to avoid getting political. Not that I don't have viewpoints in those areas. Anyone who knows me, knows I have very definite viewpoints and have no problem expressing my views. I just figured there were already a gracious number of columns available and one more voice shouting those messages in the wilderness would probably be a bit counter-productive. Instead, I have chosen to focus on more positive matters, hopefully with a bit of humor in order to bring a smile to your collective faces.
That has not changed. I am not about to attempt to convince any of you wonderful people to vote the way I have chosen to vote. You have your opinions, and that's okay with me. I have been a bit saddened in the past weeks, months and even the past couple of years by what I have seen. I have seen people resort to what can only be called rude behavior toward those with whom they disagree. I have seen instances where people can't even go to a restaurant and enjoy a meal in peace with their families. I have even seen and heard elected officials defend and even encourage such rude behavior. I am afraid it won't be long before some of these folks accost the wrong person and someone will get seriously hurt, or even worse. I have even had a friend of mine say that if you voted for and support a certain person in office, then you can't be a Christian. With my sincere apologies, but the last time I checked, a person's spiritual faith was not determined in the voting booth.
Regardless of what happens on Tuesday, Nov. 6, I hope that friends can still be friends; even in spite of political differences. Perhaps we can find a way to return to some level of civility and begin, once again, to treat each other with respect and dignity; regardless of who the hired help in Tallahassee or Washington D.C. happens to be. Speaking for myself (which happens to be the only person for whom I am even remotely qualified to speak), I do not choose or retain friendships based on a person's viewpoint on a particular issue or candidate. If you are nice to old people, children and puppies, then you and I have a chance of being good friends.