Sunday, September 21, 2008

i have to keep writing about this, or else my head will explode

  I know there's probably nothing I could do or say to make a staunch John McCain supporter change their vote. No article, no video, no piece of evidence would probably be able to make any kind of change. But yet, in order not to have my head explode, and so I can sleep (a little) better at night, I have to try. It might be beating a dead horse, but I love this country too much to just do nothing and watch this tidal wave of misinformation and media incompetence and severely misguided hype carry McCain and Palin into the White House. And I know you, fictional John McCain supporter, love this country too. That's why I'm asking you to please, please, please, stop and think and consider what's going to be best for us in these next four years. I'm not asking you to change your policies, but the most disturbing thing to me about McCain's campaign isn't the policies, but the distortions and the falsehoods and the complete and total manipulation of reality to the point where they've actively succeeded in creating an entirely new reality that somehow people have bought into. The whole narrative of the campaign is such complete and utter bull. What alternate reality are we in where Barack Obama, raised by a single mother on food stamps, can be called elitist while John McCain (who doesn't know how many houses he has) is depicted as this gung-ho, blue collar American? What alternate reality are we in where Barack Obama can be called a sexist for a comment about John McCain's economic policies (oh my god he used the word lipstick-well if you have the ability to read or hear you will know that the comment had nothing to do with Sarah Palin or women)? Or what reality is this where Fox News suddenly cares about sexism in the media-and hysterically calls the rest of the media sexist for their blatant and offensive use of the feminine pronoun. I mean how dare someone call Sarah Palin a woman. Nevermind the fact that these same news anchors hurled genuinely offensive and genuinely sexist lobs at Hillary Clinton throughout her entire campaign. This can't possibly be the real world when a nation that identifies Islamic extremism as its greatest threat, has no problem with a potential VP that can be called nothing other than a Christian extremist. That's a funny phrase, not used very often, but when someone has the audacity to actively support creationism and intelligent design being taught in public schools, never mind the fact that that kind of education completely undermines the idea that our church and our state our sepearated (you know just that tiny thought our founding fathers had-not like it was fundamental to the creation of this nation or anything), then that same person is a religious extremist. Someone is an extremist when they support abstinence only sex education in public schools, because as ideal a world as it would be where that could work and where teenagers would miraculously stop having sex, it hasn't worked and it won't. All that does happen with abstinence only sex education is that girls get pregnant and kids get sick. And what kind of morality is that, when to prove some kind of ethical point, you insist that we only teach kids about abstitence in world with staggering AIDS death tolls and teengage pregnancy rates. Not every teenage girl has a family like Bristol Palin who will emotinoally and financially support them if they get pregnant. A lot of teenage girls get kicked out of their houses. A lot of teenage girls get pregnant and never get another chance at education. Yet in our current political atmosphere, a candidate can get lauded for their family values for having a stance on sex education that, if put into policy, has the inevitable result of tearing hundreds and thousands of families apart. I must be dreaming when the idea is floated around that Sarah Palin is a feminist or in any way good for women. And I'm going to say something here, which I am normally pretty private about. I have gone back and forth but in most cases I am morally opposed to abortion, but that doesn't stop me from accepting the fact that Roe v. Wade will not be overturned by John McCain or anyone else. It doesn't stop me from acknowledging the truth that if abortion were somehow made illegal, women would still continue to get abortions, only these abortions would be secretive and often botched and often fatal. Yet Sarah Palin does not acknowledge these things, because the McCain campaign can woo social conservatives by parading around her beliefs on issues that realisitcally will not be focused on after this election. No, Palin (the woman who could possibly be our president remember) even opposes abortion in cases of rape and incest, a position that I find absolutely appalling, as a woman but more than that as a human being. When can I wake up to a world where the idea of diplomacy is what the majority of Americans hope to be the cornerstone of our foreign policy? When will this altnerate universe end where a candidate can blindly grant Israel the moral right to do "whatever it thinks is necessary to defend itself", and not be immediately called out for it. Because that statement is not only ignorant but it's completely wrong. Countries throughout history have committed crimes in the guise of defense, including our own. Defense can be a justification for terrible things, and our leaders cannot give Israel or any other of our allies a blank check for military action, not unless they want to lead us through the horrors of multiple wars. Can I please wake back up to the real world, where a leader cannot be attacked for being inspirational and articulate but rather gets attacked for things like completely misrepresenting their dealings with government earmarks or you know, not having a passport until last year. Or what about that whole not knowing what the Bush Doctrine is? (and if you say she was confused then just watch that interview again because Charlie Gibson had to spell it out for her despite several prompts) I'm just a political science minor and I know what the Bush Doctrine is. Sarah Palin has the potential to be our PRESIDENT.  I know I sound angry, and I know that just makes it harder for me to concinve anyone of anything because no one likes being yelled at, including me. But all I really want is to go back to a place of sanity and calm. And it is my most genuine desire that you, whoever you are, join me. Barack Obama is not the perfect candidate. But come November, he is the candidate we have to choose. There's too much at stake. We're on the edge of something here. I feel it and I know you probably do too. The next four years matter, more perhaps than any four years out of the last fifty. Please, if you're still not convinced, if you still disagree, just look closer. Listen not to Fox News or CNN but to the words coming from the candidates mouths. And then investigate. Search for the truth. Decide. 

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