Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Inevitable

Well, you had to guess this was coming. I know this blog is supposed to be about keeping friends and family up to date on Owen and our response as parents, but…who’s NOT talking about the presidential race these days? And I, for one, have never been shy about expressing my political views, so I think it’s appropriate to publicly post on the topic that is (THANKFULLY) sweeping our country these days.

I’m prompted to post because I finally found someone who has put my political views into words. Through the blog of a friend of a friend, I followed a link to
this post from a gal I will call “Greta who gets it” because… she does. Here’s a snipit:
“It boils down to this:

Some changes and policies can, and should, be made on a federal scale.
Some can only occur during a heart-to-heart conversation.”

Bingo. That’s one big reason I take issue with the RNC. How can the Republican party supposedly stand for smaller government and less government control and then push to make such conservative values widespread LAW? Yes, my faith informs my politics, but it doesn’t dictate that I vote with the Christian right’s legalistic agenda.

In college, I stuck out in the greek system as one of those Christian girls that didn’t drink. Lots of guys and gals in our “little club” that took it upon themselves to blatantly oppose events with alcohol, distance themselves from those that drank, and preached their message of alcohol=bad wherever they went. Never saw anyone change their mind and stop drinking because of the guilt message, though... I did, on the other hand, people who were invited by respected friends to attend a bible study or worship service, explore faith on their own terms, made a decision to follow the Lord, and THEN changed behaviors based on their newly understood moral/ethical code. Those changes come from the heart, not from guilt or rules or fear.

All that to say that I don’t think we’re going to legislate morality into our society. I think it’s government’s job to take care of government issues and it’s OUR job (if we are the church) to build relationships, invite others to meet Jesus for themselves, and let HIM lead them into making faithful, life-giving choices.

I encourage you to read Greta’s whole post (she writes much better than I do), but here is the part that made me say, YES! These are the words I have needed so long:
“I don't think some decisions can be made by a far off government; some decisions can only be made from personal relationships and interactions…. Issues like gay marriage for example, have become a non-issue for me, because what governmental decree is actually going to keep two people from falling in love with one another….
The issues that, to me, make sense to decide on a national scale are things like heath care, education, the environment, global relationships, the decision to go to war, and the economy. Those are all issues that I side with the Democrats on.

Thanks Greta. You said it better than I ever could. Here’s my best attempt…

I’m liberal because I believe government should help people that are hurting. I think those that have a lot should share with those that have little (that whole “from those who much is given, much is required” deal). I believe the best way to improve our economy is to keep people working, give them the dignity that comes with work, and help them out when those jobs aren’t paying enough to meet their basic needs.

I’m liberal because I believe government should protect our natural environment even if it might hurt some businesses along the way. I believe we are a resourceful people and can find solutions to make those businesses successful within the new constraints. I’m liberal because I believe we all have to make sacrifices to get this country where it needs to be. We can’t just “DRILL BABY DRILL” hoping that a slight increase in fuel supply will solve our energy problems forever. I believe in the long term view. That we have to do what’s right by our children and their children’s children, not just what’s best for me…this minute…today. I’m liberal because I think poor people should pay less taxes and rich people and big corporations should pay more.

Oh, and according to Mitt Romney, I’m crazy liberal because I think the people locked in Guantanamo have rights and deserve a trial to see if they’re a credible threat. Yes, I really believe that “all men are created equal” means… all men are created equal! (Though at this point, anyone locked up unjustly for the last 5 years is probably pretty mad at the United States by now even if they weren’t to begin with. Nice work!)

I won’t even mention the war that we got into based on a series of lies, the need for health care reform, the economy that’s in the tank (how’s that stimulus check working out now?), the way America has lost respect around the world, the national debt, etc, etc, etc. Can you imagine how much more money we could put into our schools if we weren’t paying for a war (or two) right now?

So, big shocker – I’m voting for Obama. I hope you will, too.

P.S. I voted for Hilary in the primary and the thought of having a woman president still sends chills up my spine. I believe it will happen one day and that woman will kick-ass. However, I do not, under any circumstance, believe that Sarah Palin is the woman for the job. I’m pretty insulted that McCain seems to think Hilary supporters will vote for him because he picked a woman. Not. Even. Close.


Shannon said...

Yay, Alissa!

You should join the facebook group called "Women not Falling for Sarah Palin as VP." And if I get one more email from my brother in law saying if I vote for Obama, we'll be speaking Arabic by 2010, I'll scream.

Peg said...

AMEN....AMEN...way to go Alissa! Love it!

I am Kate Maxwell said...

don't totally buy it, but i will say that Sarah Palin is pretty rad... and everyone where I choose to call home really likes her.

Jen said...

You were able to say everything I was thinking!!

Fawn said...

Yesssss. Thank you for going here. I hadn't even tried because I'm completely overwhelmed by the idiocy.

Go Obama.

Colleen said...

I left this huge long comment on your blog yesterday, but apparently I did something wrong and it isn't here! I just wanted to say I LOVE IT ALL! I need to cut and paste it into my blog, because you succintly say what I feel! I also feel the pressure on my liberalness because of my faith, but I can't help feeling what I think is right. You spoke on gay rights and not being able to help who falls in love with whom, and I also think this applies to abortion. I am personally very against it and would never make that choice, but at the same time, people are going to do it regardless of legislation, and it will just become dangerous and more deadly if it were made illegal. I think there are some things that just can't be legislated. I agree so much with all your points on why you are liberal. Now I just need to remember how well you said it all when people ask me why I am supporting Obama. I sure hope he wins, otherwise I fear for our country's and children's futures! Truly!

Alissa Maxwell said...

Yup Colleen. I SOOO agree on the abortion issue. Yes I would LOVE if number of abortions were zero. But I don't see how making abortion illegal will somehow reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies. Only through well rounded sex education and heart to heart discussions will we reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies an THUS reduce the number of abortions.
Personally, I think my faith leads me to be liberal - Jesus was all about "helping the least of these..."

I am Kate Maxwell said...

and for the record, since alaska will be so firmly in the republican hold, i'm voting for nader...

Piggy Penny said...

Alissa, you are a verbal hero! Thank you for saying what you have. You have intelligence, courage, conviction and unshakeable faith. THANK YOU! Well said.