In just a few days, the two major political parties in America will hold their nominating conventions, and the race for the United States’ highest elected office will be on. There is no doubt that the Democrats will nominate Senator Barack Obama in Denver August 25 – 28; and Republicans will nominate Senator John McCain in Minneapolis September 1 – 4. Whoever is elected in November will inherit a starting position in world politics, but thanks to the foresight of our forefathers, plenty of oversight on key issues.

 

Rather than get embroiled in the minutiae of political argument – which is not just a social faux pas but a no-win battle on single issues – we at T Ching would invite you to marvel at the egalitarianism of America’s political system. Where else in the world are so many parties, policies, and points-of-view given the safety and the encouragement to organize and caucus?

 

No fewer than five parties are nominating candidates this election year*, with some sixteen others – from the Boston Tea Party to the Working Families Party – holding some elected offices. Where else in the world have over a hundred parties – from the Black Panthers to the Anti-Nebraska to the Christian Freedom – been given an opportunity to express their views and seek elected office?

 

As tea drinkers, it behooves us to shy away from divisive arguments that will create disharmony in our relationships with others. This can be done without compromising our beliefs. As tea drinkers, we reserve the right to disagree with others, but never to diminish or disrespect them as individuals. From talk radio to song lyrics, we hear views expressed that might make us weep internally, but we must respect the right of people to express those views. Turn the offending appliance to “off,” if you wish, but respect the differences. Sip to the health of those who are your polar opposites.

 

Tea is all about tolerance.

 

 

 

*Democratic Party; Republican Party; Libertarian Party; Constitution Party; Green Party.

 

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