“I don’t vote,” he said.
“What?” I replied. “But, you’re a gay man. It’s important.”
“I don’t think it matters,” he said. “I don’t really think my vote counts or makes a difference.”
“I don’t really read the paper,” she said.
“What? But, you’re a smart woman in her 20s who wants to get ahead in the world,” I said.
“Yeah, but it’s boring and I really don’t need to know what else is going on in the world.”
Then September 11th happened.
I’m not kidding. I had the above conversation with a girl who I used to waitress with. I’m not sure if her opinion changed on the matter, but I will say that after September 11th, I caught her reading like crazy. Reading newspapers. Reading newspapers about other “boring” places.
The gay man, above that, I’m not sure he votes even now. When he first told me this, it made me really angry. Now, years later, I think of the source – a gay, Orthodox, Jewish man who does not wish to live his life as gay because “gay people have psychological issues.” So, he lives his “gay” life as a celibate life, so he can retain his Orthodoxy. I suppose, in that sense, the “gay” is in theory as opposed to in practice.
Well, if you can do or be something merely in theory, then I’m a goddermned unicorn.
Note to self: regain composure after unicorn outburst. Okay, I’m back.
I relay these above two anecdotes to you for a reason. Both of them are indicative of a philosophy that I later developed in life. That philosophy can be summed up as…
“I can’t save the world, but I will try to plug the hole, while you stand there doing nothing.”
or better said…
“I can’t save the world, but in my own small way, I’ll probably die trying.”
My cynical side would add: “While YOU feckin’ stand there.”
I no longer get angry at widespread apathy. I see it as ignorance. I shrug it off and I go and try to plug the holes in my life and in the lives of those that I love around me.
This is why I vote.
For that reason and because there was a time – not so long ago – when women couldn’t. I also vote because of money. The gay marriage issue in the United States is now completely tied to money and benefits and fairness, in my point of view. So, I will continue voting until we vote justice and equality back into the our laws.
I’m also going to vote for Obama. There are many reasons why. However, today, I think it’s important to give you a personal point of view as to why I will NOT be voting for Romney.
1. I have a problem with polygamy. Yes, of course, I realize that Romney is NOT a polygamist. I do not think all Mormons are polygamists. However, there is some evidence that members of Romney’s family were at one time. What’s even more important to me is that there are factions of Mormonism that STILL abide by this practice. One needs to look no further than Kody Brown and his “Sister Wives” to know that this is true. That being said, I wouldn’t vote for an Orthodox Jew or a Mel-Gibson-Catholic either. I abhor extremes. Especially, extremes that have to do with religion where it connects with my government. I don’t consider Romney extreme, but I don’t necessarily consider all Scientologists extreme either. That doesn’t mean I’d vote for Tom Cruise…or Mitt.
2. The women issue in general. I question Romney’s regard for women. Period. Whether we are “in binders” or standing out in the open.
3. Working and middle classes. I question Romney’s regard for the working and middle classes. I just do. There’s his whole 47% comment. As in, “I don’t need to worry about those 47% because all they want is a handout.” I mean, come on! Then there’s dressage. Yes, I know that it’s just a sport and it’s a sport that Romney’s wife engages in and not Romney. Regardless, I can’t think of a more snooty, white-gloved, privileged, sport for a first lady to engage in, unless of course, she put on a power suit and started kicking some minorities around.
4. The gays. There’s a wonderful little tidbit floating around the papers about how an lgbt lobbying group attended a meet and greet with Mitt Romney. At the function, one of the lgbt members asked Romney, “What should I tell my child when they ask why their other parent is not on their birth certificate?” First Romney was surprised that gays and lesbians were having children at all. It seemed to be news to him. Then he said something to the effect of, “Tell her that she’s adopted or whatever else it is that you’ve been telling her for the last 8 years.” Callous to say the least.
5. Then there’s the bullying. If you don’t know when Romney was in high school, he led another group of boys on a hunt after another boy. (He LED that group!) Once they found the boy, they pushed him to the ground and cut off his longer hair. I get it. It was high school. Everybody is a little bit of an a-hole in high school. However, try as I might, I can’t remember one incident in school where I EVER bullied anyone that badly. I’m sorry, but the President should be better than me – on most, if not all, accounts.
6. The dog on the roof thing. Who in the feck ties a dog to the roof of their car??!! Enough said.
Lastly, I like SOME of what Romney said during the debates. I liked some of the points he illustrated. But, I don’t trust him. I think he will get us into the same financial mess that Republican presidents before him have. I think he will cut, cut, cut for the rich and tell us to “spend, spend, spend.” Spend money we don’t have and buy houses we can’t afford, sending us further into debt.
Oh and then there’s that little Hurricane Sandy thing and that whole climate change nonsense. When Bloomberg, who ran as a Republican, endorses Obama and when Colin Powell, also a Republican, does as well…you sort of have to go – who’s really the better choice here?
Vote or shut up when things don’t go your way.
Actually, think of it as “securing bitching privileges” when you don’t get what you want.
It’s really that simple.
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