Saturday, September 5, 2009

Bad words

I'm considering something radical.

I'm thinking about not referring to myself as a liberal anymore. Or to my husband as a conservative. In the most broad strokes, painted with an enormous brush, that's what we are--sort of a James Carville/Mary Maitlin situation, but without the civility surrounding politics.

I started thinking after one of our very rare political arguments last night that we have become so attached to those ambiguous labels that they have come to define the A to Z of the person they describe.

I'm pretty sure it doesn't work like that. I think what started out as guiding words have become something even the political parties don't represent anymore.

I'm also fairly certain that the terms "Democrat" and "Republican" have changes so many times over the years that they are useless anymore.

So I'm going to start thinking of myself as a collection of beliefs. They may not all be well thought out beliefs, and I may be more passionate about some than about others, but that's OK. Unless I run for office, I am fine as a work-in-progress.

Here are some of my beliefs:
  1. Discrimination based on gender, race or sexual orientation is wrong. We need to stop justifying bad behavior and creating equality.
  2. We should spend more money on educating the next generation of leaders; and less money killing other countries' next generation of leaders.
  3. Nobody should go without health care.
  4. People should be more self-sufficient, not expecting the government to come in and save them every time they get in trouble.
  5. I should make decisions about myself and my family; not the government.
  6. Family values are a good thing. Dicipline, respect, modesty and faith aren't bad words. Love is not ALL you need!

There are more, but six is enough to start with. Maybe I fall in line more with one ideology than the other, and that's fine. But if the other side has something great to say, I should be able to agree with that, too.

Maybe if open-mindedness were a political asset, we could get more things done in this country.

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1 comment:

  1. I couldn't have said it better myself! I hate how partisan the U.S. has gotten over the last 10 years or so (or has it always been this way, I've just been old enough to care for the last 10 years or so?). If Nevada had an open primary, I'd register Independent and be done with it!