Voting with compassion

To the editor,
As I consider how to vote on Nov. 6, I keep thinking of a statement from Father Greg Boyle, a Catholic priest who works on building community and job skills with former gang members in L.A. He says, “Here is what we seek: a compassion that can stand in awe at what the poor have to carry rather than stand in judgment at how they carry it.”
Too many of our public policies make life even more difficult for those of us who have the fewest resources, while benefitting those who have the most. On Nov. 6, I’m voting for representatives who start from a place of compassion, rather than judgment, and clearly demonstrate that commitment in their policies, including universal access to adequate health care; safe, affordable housing; robust public education; and a clean, stable environment.
I’m also voting “yes” on Propositions Two (independent redistricting) and Three (voting access) because I believe our democracy is strongest when elections are fair and accessible.
We have so much work to do to build a society in which all feel safe and have enough. The least we can do is get out to vote next Tuesday, and even better: to vote with compassion for marginalized people and care for our environment foremost in our minds.
Kirstin Vander Giessen-Reitsma, Three Rivers

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