Election day is here and I’m still just as torn as I have been this entire election season. All my adult life, I’ve identified as a Republican. I called myself a moderate Republican - - but still held onto the “Republican” part of it with some pride. Up until, roughly, early 2005 where Congress rushed in where only courts should tread on the Terry Schaivo case. Being a huge states rights supporter - this move offended me. Since then, I’ve developed quite a distaste for the party that I called my own.
The Republican party is a difficult place for an atheist like me to be - especially if you consider the far right wing of the party and their religious agendas. I’m not an ‘activist’ atheist at all - - I believe in religious freedom, I don’t care if the Pledge of Allegiance has the word ‘god’ in it and it doesn’t matter to me if there is a Christian cross at the top of some hill in California that stands as a memorial to fallen veterans. I do not believe that this country, The United States of America should be governed by christian law or that the bible is a book to be taken seriously as the word of a higher power. It is, in my opinion, a book of fables and stories that teach good lessons and holds good moral value - - but not a book inspired by some all-seeing, all-knowing diety.
I don’t believe that god wanted George Bush in the White House. As a matter of fact, it unnerves me to hear that a man in the position of President takes direction and inspiration from an unknown presence that he believes is there - though you cannot see, hear, feel, touch or taste it. The Republican party, by and large, has become the party of religion - and I can’t reconcile that with my own beliefs any longer. I can’t call myself a Republican and feel good about it in any way at all.
Why do I make a horrible Republican?
- I am an atheist - which means I do not believe in god, allah or any other higher power.
- I am pro-choice and believe in a womans right to choose
- I believe homosexual individuals should have the right to marry
- I do not believe in the death penalty
- I believe that, as a global society, we are careless with our environment
- I believe the government does not belong in my bedroom, kitchen, living room or any other room in my house - nor should they keep track of the books I check out at my local library
- I do not believe that prayer should be part of a regular school day in public schools
- I sometimes read 9/11 conspiracy theories and think.. ‘it could happen’…
- I believe Iraq is one of the Bush Administrations biggest failures
- I don’t believe laws should be based on a particular denomination’s interpretation of a religious text.
Why would I make a horrible Democrat?
- I believe the money that I make is my own
- I believe strongly in personal responsibility - keep the government out of my life as much as humanly possible
- I have no problem with the word ‘god’ being in the Pledge of Allegiance
- I believe in the right to bear arms
- I believe in a strong military and believe that, sometimes, war IS the answer
- I think this country is filled with ridiculous and needless lawsuits and this country has become too litigation-happy. Of COURSE the coffee at McDonald’s is Hot, idiot!
- When you sell me that cup of coffee from McDonalds - do it in English
- I think Ronald Reagan was a phenomenal human being, and an excellent president
- I don’t think being a minority makes you a victim.
- I think affirmative action is outdated
- I don’t think anyone ever died because of something Ozzy Osbourne wrote
- I believe in, and support, racial profiling
- I believe the UN is a joke
- The ACLU is also a joke
- I believe this Administration has had a hand in some real successes in Iraq that are overshadowed by the failures and that the successes are not trumpeted loudly enough to be heard through the crap that comes out of Bush haters every day
That’s really just a small run down. Do you see where I am conflicted?
It’s an identity crisis I’m suffering from. Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, wrote the renowned book entitled, “On Death and Dying.” In it, she outlined the five stages of death and bereavement that human beings undergo while facing imminent demise or the certain loss of a loved one. Dr. Kübler-Ross labeled these five stages of grief, sequentially known as, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.
Today, on election day, I’ve reached the final stage of the death of my affiliation with the Republican party - acceptance. I go to the polls today to vote for my Democrat candidates in this state. I belive this country needs more balance. I believe the Republican party has been in control and in the majority for too long. This system of ours works because there exists a balance of diverse views, opinions and ideologies - - but the balance does not exist if one side of the scale weighs heavier than the other.
I will also go to the polls to day and vote for two things that will appear on my Wisconsin ballot:
- Should the death penalty be enacted in the State of Wisconsin for cases involving a person who is convicted of multiple first−degree intentional homicides, if the homicides are vicious and the convictions are supported by DNA evidence? (text from dane101.com)
- Shall section 13 of article XIII of the constitution be created to provide that only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in this state and that a legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized in this state? (text from dane101.com)
I’m solid on both of those issues - it’s No for both.
For the first time in my adult life - I will pull the “D” lever. Not necessarily because I subscribe to every agenda on the liberal platform - but because I believe that the Republican party needs a wake up call. I can no longer vote for a politician who is against a womans right to choose, for example. Or the very same politician who is against stem cell research. Or the same politician who feels prayer should be a part of the public school day. These are issues that face us, our children, every day - and voting today is voting for our, and their futures.
Tolerance, religious freedom, separation of church and state, privacy, civil rights, freedom of speech and press, iraq - all of these things are important to me - - I don’t believe they are important enough to the party I used to call my own.