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So... I was talking to a buddy of mine last week. He decided he wanted to talk about the upcoming election. He's a Dem. Die hard, dedicated, committed, absolutely a Dem.  He is a Dem in the purest sense of the word.  No he didn't realize the Dems voted and supported slavery in the 1850's/1860's.  No he didn't realize that it was called the Democratic-Republican Party in the 1800's.  He did not realize it was the
passage of the Anti-Slavery act that caused the major rift in the Party and those who supported slavery became the Democratic Party and those who were Anti-Slavery became the Republican Party.  In his mind all 'Pubs are evil and have from the beginning and will be in the future determined to destroy all freedoms among minority races.  He is a Dem in the purest sense of the word.  He knows NOTHING about his party except what his parents told him.  He is a true Dem and celebrates his ignorance.

He is a Dem because his Mom & Dad are Dems. Oh, and their Mom's & Dad's were also Dems. According to him, his family were ALWAYS loyal supporting Dems & they could never and would never ever under any circumstances have been, be in the present, and Lord knows his children would be disowned if they ever became 'Pubs!  Interesting because he can trace his lineage back to several Great-greats who were slaves.  Their OWNERS were Dems... remember?  Dems supported slavery! ::uncomfortable silence::

We talked and we talked.  He believes the government has a moral responsibility to take care of its people so welfare and social service programs should have the highest fiscal priorities.  I believe that if a man can work, he should work.  There should be some government support but generation after generation of welfare mom's (and dad's) have led to an “entitlement attitude.” Too many who can support themselves now believe the government HAS to support them. They live their lives taking government hand-outs and doing very little, if anything to improve their lot in life.  THEN they, who have not earned the money they are spending, go to a store and give the clerks/salesperson an exceptionally hard time because they were not the first in line and have to wait!  “Y'all should hire more people 'cause this is ridiculous!”  Ok... I'm hiring.  Let me hire you! “Naw... I got other things I got to do.” 

He believes that government should be large and in charge.  I believe in fiscal conservatism and that government should be as small as possible AND that it should be a bottom up approach. Local government, then State government, then Federal government.  That is the order in which to address local needs.  The great Democratic politician Tip O'Neil said it best: “All politics is local.”  It's a shame the Dem's never really accepted that and more of a shame to me that my 'Pubs have failed to embrace it.

He doesn't know much about his party.  What he does know is that he could and would never vote Republican.  I know my party and frankly I'm ashamed of what it has become. They think they should be the moral conscience of the nation.  They are always quoting polls but I have asked both my Democratic and Republican friends have any of them, or anyone they know, EVER been called or emailed by a pollster.  Not one single Black man or woman I connect with, either directly or through the “six degrees of separation” has ever participated in a single poll quoted by conservative think tanks! So when 'Pubs  & Dems say "the American People,” are they intentionally redefining that label to exclude racial minorities?  I hate what my party has become.  It was great before GW Bush (the latter) to be able to say I was a 'Pub.  We believed in smaller government, less governmental intrusion in our lives.  There was no moral superiority.  There was just fiscal responsibility.

He is going to vote for Barak Obama.  Not because he believes in him.  Not because he supports him.  Not because he's the best person for the job.  He is going to vote for him because he is Black and more important, because he is a Democrat. A few months until the election and I still don't know who I am going to vote for.  The 'Pub candidate is someone I don't trust.  The Dem candidate I think is weak.  My friend say “vote Obama.  After all, he is the 'lessor' of two evils.”  I'm sorry.  The lessor of two evils is STILL evil.  The 2008 election I was in a very long line.  It took me 35 minutes to get to the polling booth.  By the time I reached the booth I STILL did not know who I was going to vote for.  I stood in that booth for another 10 minutes running the options through my mind.  I made a decision.  One I am proud of but when I left the booth I did not know if I had made my decision because of some outside influence or because of my own internal angst.
 
So my friend and I talked about this dichotomy of  thought and deed. It turns out that we both believe so much of the same thing.  We want freedoms for all people.  We want to be able to make our own decisions with minimal governmental intrusion.  We want to be able to work in our chosen fields with no judgment.  We want children to be supported by loving parents.  We want stable neighborhoods.  We want to be able to go to a department store with our White friends pull out our credit cards and not be asked for ID.  I mean, after all, the white guy in front of me with the exact same kind of card did not have to show HIS ID!  We want fairness & justice.  Neither of us wants to be pulled over by police for increasingly criminal “driving while Black.”  We want to walk down the street and not have the white women clutch the purses a little tighter just because we are Black.  We don't want White men to automatically think we are after their womenfolk. We are not interested is supporting the “mandingo complex”... well... maybe we DO like that one!

Yeah... the world is a circle...


 


Comments

K. Franklin
07/03/2012 6:58am

I love a healthy debate, so indulge me if you will. I guess I am politically involved so I found your blog posting very interesting, to say the least. I wonder how on earth you can be a Black Gay REPUBLICAN, it is paradoxical of the highest order. I certainly don't disagree that there is a problem with generational dependence on social programs, BUT until you address the problem of generational POVERTY created by the massive inequities of wealth in our country...you will NOT solve that issue. I think it is incredulous to suggest that if Americans living in poverty would simply get jobs then their woes would be solved. How do we account for that fact that a low skilled American job pays so little that an employee earning the minimum wage for a full time job would still live well BELOW the poverty level? Or that the schools that many of these citizens attended have been gutted by your Republican compatriots so they would be unable to participate in the true workforce or the democracy. Like many "progressives" I do believe that government serves a key role in addressing it's people's most pressing issues. If those issues don't include EDUCATION, CIVIL RIGHTS, THE ECONOMY, and THE ENVIRONMENT...I'm not sure what country you are living in. We can focus on the history of the Democratic party as a deterrent for participation or we can review the PRESENT state of party politics as a way to inform our position. Let's review the current status of the Republican party, shall we? The Republican party of today has waged a WAR of epic proportions on the middle class, marginalized peoples (Black, gay, Latinos), and the very fabric of some of our once most highly prized institutions (education and most notably the CONSTITUTION). It's funny to me how people have selective amnesia when speaking about Ronald Reagan, but let's share some hard facts. Ronald Reagan left us a national debt of about $3.5 trillion almost triple what he inherited. You speak about being asked to show your ID to swipe your credit card, how about when you are asked to show several forms of identification as a means to disenfranchise you from the right to vote? I respect your right to believe what you believe because I certainly wouldn't want to be compelled to subscribe to such views. But, I am at a LOSS as to how you could look around you at the savage inequalities in our country and come to these conclusions. Perhaps we should not vote for Barrack Obama because he is Black...how about we ALL support him because he is the BEST choice for President of the United States of America.

Reply
07/03/2012 9:32am

I differ from you in the respect of a “healthy debate.” I love WATCHING a healthy debate but I prefer a conversation. I'm glad you find the Babblings interesting! HOPEFULLY we can converse and create a space where friendly dialogue doesn't diminish the “who” we are and we do not become the worst of what we can be!

I'm only gonna touch on a couple of your points: No need to wonder how on earth I can be a Black Gay REPUBLICAN! That should be no more surprising the the fact I can be a BLACK Gay Republican or even a Black GAY Republican! Lol-lol We are, none of us separate from our individual parts and beliefs. We are, all of us, the culmination of those parts and beliefs and some of us (I don't think I'm here yet) are even greater then our individual parts & beliefs. I am Black. CHECK. In fact I am Black and American Indian but in this country that makes me Black or as my birth certificate says, “Negro.” I am Gay. CHECK. I have a healthy appreciation for the adult human male form. So much so that I am deeply involved with one such form and have been for a number of years. I am a Republican. CHECK. Now this get's a little more complicated. 'Pubs today are significantly different then 'Pubs of the past (as you point out). But the same can be said of Dem's.

Here's where so much of the rhetoric gets distorted and alas, brings about the question of how a racial/ethnic minority and how can a Gay support this “party.” Unfortunately, too often the 'party' has been and is being controlled by social conservatives. This branch of evil does exists in each of the political parties in the United States (oh... this is where I live BTW!).

I love the Wikipedia definition of these evil people: Social conservatism is a form of authoritarianism often associated with the position that the national government should have a greater role in the social affairs of its citizens, generally supporting whatever it sees as morally correct choices and discouraging or outright forbidding those it considers morally wrong ones. Again, I will point out... this group are mostly vocally associated with the Republican Party but do not doubt, there are a significant number of them in leadership positions within the Democratic Party as well. In the South they are called “Dixi-Crats.” This is a big reason our President, who had a majority of Dems in Congress (both Houses) in his first 2 years in office, couldn't get a damned thing done! Sure it was 'Pubs who argued and voted against his platform but they support among these Dixicrats, but it was the evil “sheeps in Dem's clothing” ie: DixiCrats who torpedoed most of his social and fiscal agenda. They ran for office as Dem's and were voted in as Dem's but supported the social agenda of conservatives. Oh... MANY of them were re-elected AS DEMOCRATS AGAIN, 2 years later! So this is not a matter that they were Republican's who fooled their electorate. Even with a 2 year history of siding the 'Pubs, their own constituents voted them back in!

MY Republican Party, the one I grew up knowing and respecting, is not the Republican Party of today. On the other hand, the Democratic Party of today is not the Democratic Party of my parents and their parents. Social conservatives and social liberals have hijacked the intent of the Constitution for their own purposes. Even in this day of 24 hour news cycles and the round the clock, instant gratification blog-o-spere it should noted that many Americans are somewhat more moderate but respond and react, not to moderation, but to the extremes. The surprise my detractors have about my political leanings are based on their own issues. In the 30 years+ that I have been a registered voter I have voted the political spectrum. I vote my convictions and when I look back over those many votes I see that my convictions lean toward a more fiscally responsible government. In this day and age that is neither of the two major political factions in this country. It is also a part of both of them.

I like your final paragraph: “Perhaps we should not vote for Barrak(sp) Obama because he is Black... how about we ALL support him because he is the BEST choice for President of the United States of America.” I totally agree with the first part of the statement... We SHOULD all support him, he IS the President of the United States. I also completely disagree with the second. I do not believe he is the BEST choice for President but based on our two majority party system, he may be a better choice then my Party's choice. I just HATE going to the polls and saying, “Oh gods! I have to vote for one of them but I really despise the politics of one and truly hate the politics of the other.” I wish I had the self-assuredness you evince but I don't. My vote is only one vote but damn it, it's MY vote and in that moment it is the most important one in the room and if I hav

Reply
07/03/2012 9:39am

and if I have to agonize over it before I cast it then I will. I will not regret my choice. I will reflect on it after wards and I will move on. I cannot be so blind as to vote Democratic simply because he looks somewhat like me nor can I be so headstrong as to vote Republican simply because this is my party.

Isn't it GREAT to live in such a country where we CAN agonize over these choices!

Reply



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