Results are in from the Aug. 1-15 segment of The American Pundit political writing contest, and as with the last segment, writers on opposite sides of the United States have advanced to the next round of competition with their winning entries. They earn $250 apiece and a chance to compete for the $5,000 Grand Prize, which will be awarded after the November election.
Congratulations are in order for Benjamin Burton Jr. of Atlanta, who tackled the Writing Assignment topic about restoring faith in the electoral process. In his winning entry, Democracy dead? No!, Burton tells us that restoring our faith in the integrity of American voting requires restoring faith in ourselves. “Restore faith in your own ability to decide what's best for you and your community and move from there,” he writes, providing words of wisdom we all can take to heart.
Burton is an Allvoices Anchor who has been writing for the site since May 16, 2010. We look forward to hearing more from him throughout the 2012 campaign.
In the general subject category, Carolyn McGraw of Valley Center, Calif., takes home the honors and earns a promotion to Anchor for her thought-provoking piece American Theocracy: The rising influence of religion in U.S. politics, published Aug. 15.
“American Democracy is taking on shades of theocracy,” she writes. “Law proposed, argued and implemented on religious belief is occurring more often at the state and federal level. The resultant law represents fundamental Christian dogma. These laws are changing the landscape of American life.” McGraw goes on to declare that every vote this year is related the future of individual rights.
McGraw joined Allvoices on May 24 of this year, and we hope she continues to weigh in with her observations as the election season heats up.
The American Pundit Writing Assignment for the second half of August turns to the upcoming political conventions and the question of superficiality in political reporting vs. reporting of significance:
Does the media place too much emphasis on the superficial aspects of politics at the expense of meaningful, investigative coverage? Or do you think full coverage of stage-managed events – such as the upcoming Republican and Democratic conventions – is also necessary to keep the voting public as informed as possible? How could media coverage of the campaigns and candidates be improved?
The deadline for this round of entries is 11:59 p.m. on Aug. 31. Two additional winners will be selected from the entrants, with at least one winner picked from entries on the assigned topic. In general, submissions should be at least 400-1,000 words in length.
Stay on top of the campaign with The American Pundit’s unique combination of citizen punditry and citizen journalism at http://www.allvoices.com/election2012. If you like writing about U.S. politics and the 2012 campaign, enter "The American Pundit" competition. Allvoices is awarding four $250 prizes each month between now and November. These monthly winners earn eligibility for the $5,000 grand prize and the $1,000 runner-up prize, to be awarded after the November election. Head to http://www.allvoices.com/write_now to sign up!