I like my camera more every day. I especially appreciate it during this particular election year.
It saves me from myself.
The old cliche suggesting that a picture is worth a thousand words truly provides us a the perfect means to bite our tongues and to let the pictures do the talking.
Besides, pretty pictures and the constant daily search for them can keep us distracted at least temporarily from the ugliness in this world.
Then, we turn on the TV or surf the Internet which generally suggests a dark and foreboding existence.
We need to be reminded more and more, it seems, that we're really okay and that there really are a whole lot of other okay people out there.
I submit that some folks believe we're in dire straits, that our lives are beyond terrible, that we're propped right on the precipice ready to fall over the edge, simply because they listen to and believe virtually all the stuff they read or see on social media or in political ads or discussions.
Never mind the source. Never mind the motive behind the source. Never mind the fact that many of these questionable sources answer to no one except themselves or to the clandestine forces that encourage, direct or finance such fabricated garbage.
Sadly, many people suffer from an unfortunate and sometimes dangerous case of naivete or wishful thinking, believing that if it's fed out there on the air waves or on the Internet, certainly we're supposed to believe it without one ounce of skepticism.
We are constantly offered this overloaded buffet of far-fetched fodder, and if we're not careful in selecting the true facts from all those available for our digestion, we start believing it.
This happens especially during the Presidential election cycles.
Sadly, these days, the Presidential election cycles are lasting about 3.5 years of every four.
The few months of relief we citizens actually have from watching, listening to and sifting through the mostly manufactured dirt and slimy gutter talk hardly give us time to take our collective breath and to realize that things are really not all as bad as they seem.
In essence, there really are lots of pretty flowers out there and more good people than bad, even throughout election cycles.
Most of the people in this great country really do have good hearts and gentle souls. We are basically a good nation filled with genuinely decent citizens representing all walks of life, all beliefs and all ethnic backgrounds.
My question this morning is why must we take this constant battering and why does virtually every principle in which we generally believe have to experience such a tumultuous test for so long?
It seems to me that nowadays with the American Presidential election system, the people become the biggest losers, regardless of their political leanings.
These prolonged cycles take a toll on our emotions, our physical well being and especially on our confidence that we really are living in the greatest nation on earth.
In spite of absorbing a great amount of the continuing negative, damaging and ruthless rhetoric, I still believe that we are living in a great nation, and I'm hoping I always will.
The Presidential election machine and the forces that run it, in my mind, are the biggest enemy that we face, and, as we move onward where the cycle takes up the whole four years between elections, we could be on the edge of that precipice and really want to tumble over it.
I believe our Legislative powers should vote to reform our Presidential election cycles by shortening the time between officially announcing a candidacy and the actual election.
Seems like after all repetitive rhetoric with its continually added gutter zingers we've suffered over this current cycle, the elective process could be much more effective in 3.5 months rather than 3.5 years.
If that were to happen, I'm betting we'd have a lot more time to appreciate the beautiful world around us and maybe even get back to liking each other.
For now, my beloved camera will continue to be my therapy, cuz the beauty around me is natural, true and not at all mean-spirited.