"Get up there with that lady that's up on top of this Capitol dome, that lady that stands for liberty. Take a look at this country through her eyes if you really want to see something. And you won't just see scenery; you'll see the whole parade of what Man's carved out for himself, after centuries of fighting. Fighting for something better than just jungle law, fighting so's he can stand on his own two feet, free and decent, like he was created, no matter what his race, color, or creed. That's what you'd see. There's no place out there for graft, or greed, or lies, or compromise with human liberties."
Great principles don't get lost once they come to light. They're right here; you just have to see them again!
~ Jefferson Smith, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
I hate politics.
Breeding ground for corruption and greed. The way it pits good people against one another. The need to be right…superior. How it can make you think less of a person if his persuasion doesn't align with your own. The sense of doom and despair many predict if the other guy wins.
We're a nation of liars and lunatics from top to bottom, talking out of opposite corners of the same mouth, and if that kicks a burr under your saddle think on how you vote daily with your choices and how that contradicts your rhetoric.
Or maybe the chaos and confusion of partisan politics simply paralyzes, lulling the less engaged into an apathetic stupor.
But that's the down side; there are up sides.
The right, privilege, duty to vote. The freedom to speak, oppose, protest and rally.
The opportunity for good people to make a difference.
There's a David versus Goliath match going on in Georgia's 9th Congressional District, where districts were redrawn following the 2010 census. Where an unheard-of Democrat is running against an incumbent Republican…
In a district that is SOLID red…
Most of the friends of that Democrat Underdog are Republican, and no telling how many times he was told "If you'd only run as a Republican, you could win…!"
See, he cannot win if some of those Republicans don't cross over party lines and vote for him.
And many after knowing him, or meeting him, or hearing him are willing.
But will they be enough?
You pull Jody Cooley aside and ask him why he's running, and he'll tell you a lot of reasons; you know the one that impresses me the most?
He's told his two daughters their voice makes a difference, and you gotta try when something's important, and how can he say that to them if he's not willing to do the same?
Jody is more moderate than left and he doesn't claim to know all the answers. He loves his country and cares about people and his concern for others has marched him right outside his comfort zone. He's desperate to give voice to those who have none.
He loves Jesus–and his life would show it–but he's not willing to co-opt him and add him to the ballot. He's done a little fundraising with the emphasis on little–not related to effort but because of what the people who need representing have to give. His opponent's coffers are full of Big Party Money.
He's been out there breakfasting, lunching and barbecuing til he's stuffed and hoarse and thinks he can't shake one more hand while his Republican counterpart, Doug Collins, is sitting smug, sure of a win, not doing much campaigning because he doesn't have to…BECAUSE THEIRS IS A SOLID RED DISTRICT. Jody hasn't bad mouthed him, but I have absolute zero respect for that.
Jody went into this race not standing a chance but following his conviction that if he can make a difference, he needs to at least try.
He's worked tirelessly the last several months, doing everything he can to win, listening to the cries of the weary, speaking kindness and common sense, and he's turned many a Republican head and EARNED THEIR VOTES.
He's had a helpmate by his side, his wife of 26 years, cheering him on, championing his voice, campaigning in front of and behind the scenes.
Jody Cooley is my brother-in-law and I could not be more proud of him. I couldn't be prouder of my sister, either, who believes in him and for him when he wonders what in the world he's doing.
He's a good man and the best choice to make a real difference, to bring compromise where it's needed.
I wish I could vote for him. If you're in Georgia's 9th District, you should at least check him out. You could not have a better Representative. And I hope you'll email, Facebook "Like", Tweet or otherwise share this post with everyone you know.
Because, like Jody, you make a difference.
(Jody didn't pay me to say any of this; in fact, all of these opinions are my own…and I've help my tongue when I want to say more, so I hope you can read between the lines. 🙂 )