Will Last Tuesday’s Election Really Matter?

The election of Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate in Massachusetts shows that citizens can buck the political establishment. Now the question is will those who don’t like the direction of things in Tennessee get engaged, and will our state’s politicians do a better job of listening?

There were two big political earthquakes in the United States last week. And they both have huge implications going into the 2010 election cycle. But the election of Scott Brown may not make much difference if citizens and politicians don’t learn from it the most fundamental lesson.

Everyone knows about the election of Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate seat formerly held by the late Ted Kennedy in Massachusetts. But most of what I have seen in terms of critiquing the election has had to do with evaluating what role President Obama, national health care, etc. had to do with his victory. To be honest, there can be as many reasons for why he won as there were voters. And it may not have been any one issue. But the one thing I think we can all draw from the election is that if enough people get tired of the way things are going politically, they can make a difference.

The election of Scott Brown demonstrates that a relatively unknown state Senator can buck the entrenched political machinery of his state if enough people will join forces. My point in this isn’t partisan. Either party can be entrenched, whether it’s at the state level or the local level. Both parties can take voters and their base for granted. And either party can find themselves on the wrong end of the vote tally if they do so long enough.

That said, there were many in conservative political circles, particularly those who value America’s Judeo-Christian moorings, who became despondent and discouraged after the 2008 elections. And for those of that political bent, there has sure been a steady stream of bad stuff coming out of Washington in the last year.

But instead of wringing our hands, we need to put our hands to the plow and not look back. We need to put our hands to work. And we need to join hands. If enough of us do so, we can make a difference. And Massachusetts is Exhibit A for what can happen when enough people say “enough.”

If you are reading this, then you have taken a good first step toward being informed and finding a way to let your voice be heard. But how about helping us join hands with your friends and neighbors who may still be out there wringing their hands? Take your first step in the new year toward making a difference by forwarding this email to them and asking them to join us.

We can make a difference, but that difference won’t come about simply because we want it to. It will come about when we are willing to do something about it, even if it’s as simple as emailing a friend to ask them to join us or faithfully emailing our representatives with our views and opinions. After last Tuesday, the smart politicians should be hearing a little bit better than before.

If we don’t do anything any differently, then we can’t expect anything different to happen. In November 2010, we will find out if what happened last Tuesday really mattered here in Tennessee.