Watch out voters, here it comes |

Watch out voters, here it comes

As we start down the final stretch of this campaign, my thoughts have increasingly been with an old buddy, Jack Farmer. Jack was a Vietnam vet who did three tours, and then turned to alcohol to calm the ghosts howling in his mind after returning to the relative civility of the U.S. I met him when we were both in school, on the GI Bill, and we hung out a bit trying vainly to re-capture some of the intense camaraderie known only to those who have spent time in a war zone.

The booze prevented that, of course, but I can still see him sitting at some seedy bar, a shot of tequila poised in one hand and a pinch of salt laid out along the outstretched thumb of the other. “Watch out stomach,” he’d growl before downing his momentary reprieve, “here it comes.”

Which just about sums up my feeling about elections in general.

I don’t believe I’m alone in this. Many in our community likely feel themselves bracing against the vitriolic onslaught about to come. As history repeats itself, we’ll be bombarded by charges, counter-charges, name-calling (let alone sign- stealing and other political shenanigans) filling the air like the howls of vampires at a blood feast. Seems like it’s this way every campaign, only more so as the county grows.

Jack is long gone now, victim of his own defense strategy, and in his place I nurse a queasy disdain for unmitigated conflicts fought for vainglory and material gain, rather than the defense of freedom. Far too much is at stake.

Thinking of Jack, my mind goes to the dead of all our wars – however “popular” – and how their sacrifice is dishonored by any who would resort to deceptive manipulation and political thuggery to manipulate the democratic process. In this spirit, I urge all of us to refrain from such tactics and reject any candidate who fails to do so. Taking such a stand is an integral part of the “eternal vigilance” safeguarding our precious freedom.

William Larsen

Nevada City

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