This is an important week coming up. On Aug. 4, each one of us has the privilege and the responsibility to vote. In fact, it’s crucial.
Politics concern us all, and it is most important to understand the importance of voting, recognizing that our vote does count, and that in order to vote wisely, we must be informed. Politics are the backbone of this country because our political freedom in a democracy/republic depends on the determination of the people. In other words, politics is governing by the people, of the people and for the people.
Don’t let anyone tell you that you don’t know enough, nor do you have any right to engage in political discussion. We all have opinions.
One of our great American artists, an illustrator by the name of Norman Rockwell was born in 1894 and died in 1978. He was famous for his portrayal of the American culture. Rockwell began as an illustrator for a Scouting magazine, and soon became the sole illustrator for the Saturday Evening Post for four decades. As he grew in his art and outreach, he became aware of serious issues, and he felt responsible for telling those stories in his paintings.
Norman became political; and it was a natural progression as he thought about issues and expressed them in his paintings.
What a gift he gave to us, the American people.
He began to express the heart of God in his work. At one point, midway in his career, he painted four pictures, depicting the four great American freedoms; The Freedom of Speech, the Freedom from Fear, The Freedom of Worship, and the Freedom from Want.
Guarantees. Treasures we must preserve.
The Freedom from Fear shows little children sleeping in their beds, mom and dad watching over them with no fear of any danger or oppression. The Freedom from Worship shows the heads of different aged people praying, and the Freedom from Want shows a family gathered around a Thanksgiving dinner table while grandpa and grandma present the turkey. Freedom of Speech shows a meeting where a factory-type blue collar worker is speaking his mind while others look on.
Each subject here is political. It says much more than just the picture. It speaks of freedoms guaranteed to each of us that no party or group must ever have the opportunity to take from us.
In later years Rockwell focused in on even more serious subjects, such as racism and bigotry. He drew the picture of the little girl, Ruby Bridges walking into the William Franz Elementary school in 1964 during the Civil Rights Movement at that time.
He grew in his craft and painted many more stories that told about us, the American people.
It is said that each of us eventually becomes concerned and informed as we mature, and that as we get wiser, we come to understand what a gift we own in this United States of America. We are called to take responsibility for our rights, and to see to it that no other power, nor ideology takes that freedom from us.
Norman got it right. And he went on to draw and paint illustrations that touched the heart of the American spirit. He preached politics and religion without saying a word. And people HEARD.
There is a scripture in the Bible that says, “The thief comes but to steal, kill, and destroy.” There are thieves. They want to destroy this system. But, if you will remember to become informed, speak out, and VOTE, you will be doing your share.
It’s that important. See you Tuesday.
Judi Tabler lives in Pawnee County and is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune. She can be reached at email@example.com or juditabler@awomansview.