Time for us all to go into election mode. I’ve seen a lot of elections and to my shame I’ve never properly engaged with politicians. They came to my door, shook my hand and muttered some platitudes and comments about me doing my best for them on polling day and that was it. How were they to know what my priorities really were? Well not any more – I intend to ask each canvasser a small number of questions about the issues that matter to me. Their answers will inform my decision about how I will vote and hopefully my questions will inform them about the kind of issues I’m concerned about.
We discussed this at the January meeting of the mid-west humanists. There was general agreement that it is a good idea and that perhaps we should go further. Some organisations issue questions to candidates and publish the answers as a kind of voters guide. It is a very good way for an interest group to let politicians and the wider public know about their concerns. See this example from the Atheist Community of Austin.
We decided to draw up a list of questions relating to humanist/atheist/skeptic concerns that we could send to candidates and publish their answers. The very fact of sending out a press release will generate interest in the topics chosen and in our work because the media is always looking for new angles during an election. Listed below are some suggested questions.
- Do you favour bringing education fully into state control?
- Do you favour having no law against blasphemy?
- Do you favour removing the requirement in the constitution that judges and the president swear a religious oath on entering office?
- Do you favour the introduction of legislation to regulate abortion?
- Do you favour the removal of funding for religious chaplains in state funded institutions?
Please feel free to suggest amendments or additional questions in the comments.
Filed under: humanism |