Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Aftermath of the Election

When I wrote about the election yesterday, I had in mind that there were issues to be voted on that would encourage more Amish to cast their vote. After all, more readily available abortions, gay marriage, and the legalisation of cannabis for recreational purposes must surely be issues that the Amish have an opinion about. But the more I thought about it, the more I realised I was quite wrong. Yes, the Amish do have an opinion, but no, they did not turn out in their droves to vote.

Why not? Well, while the Amish do have their opinions (and they are certainly aware of the issues), they do not feel that the issues directly affect them. For one thing, abortion is pretty rare amongst a people who believe in the absolute sanctity of human life; stricter enforcement of the death penalty is not going to encourage votes from amongst a people who refuse to participate in violence of any sort; homosexual activity is almost unheard of amongst a people who take the Biblical view literally, where it describes such activity as 'unnatural' and 'an abomination'; drug misuse, while not totally absent, is still not common amongst a people that accept the human body is the 'temple of the Holy Spirirt' and that they must not defile it.

So you see, because the Amish have got these matters more or less under control in their own communities, they do not feel the need to try to impose their values on the rest of civil society.

The election is now over; Barak Obama has been returned to office for a further four years. Would the Amish population have preferred Romney, with his traditional stand on family values? Yes, probably. So why did they not vote for him and 'save' their country from legalising practices that are abhorent to them? The fact is, they do not see America as their country primarily. They belong to the Kingdom of God; they believe in the total separation of Church and State - one should not dictate, or try to impose, on the other. Whatever the laws of the land allow, the Amish will continue to teach and live by the precepts found in the Bible. They will still not allow abortion, or gay marriage, or cannabis use for recreational purposes. So in that sense, voting or not voting will have had no effect upon them. And, they believe, will have had no effect on the country at large either.

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