It has taken me nearly a month, but I am finally over the 2004 Presidential Election. My candidate lost and I have to deal with that, I have to come to grips with the fact that Bush will be in the Oval Office for four more years. Part of me hopes that he will govern this time with humility, but his quip about having “political capital to spend” dashes any hopes of a second term informed by intelligent reflection on the issues and policy tempered by common sense and the best interests of all the American people. And part of me hopes he fails miserably, so that we, the other majority can point to his continued failures and say we told you so. Is that wrong?
But I have learned something about myself in this process, namely that I am not Republican Party material; indeed while I have always considered myself squarely in the Independent camp, I find myself leaning more and more toward Democratic Party ideas and principles. That being said I do not consider myself a liberal, my politics have always taken on a decidedly moderate tenor, but it’s a tune that is increasingly more in harmony with the Democratic Party, and in discord with the Republican Party. I see the Republican Party as an intolerant organization that is increasingly conservative, and run by right-leaning religious zealots; this is not the Party for me. I have even given thought to officially registering as a Democrat, and by the next election cycle I have a feeling the deed will be done.
So now that Bush has regained the White House, we, the other Americans that voted for Kerry must come to grips with four more years of mediocrity, four more years of dysfunction, and four more years of conservative partisan. The net effect is we will have no voice in our federal governmental.
At first the prospect of this left me feeling extremely depressed and feeling lost, my American democracy snatched from me by those whose agenda is decidedly contrary to the tradition and principles engendered in the federal constitution. Having written the foregoing I have to ask: am I being too dramatic, am I allowing emotion to dictate my feelings? I have to answer with a resounding no! I see a real and growing threat to our freedom-loving, intellectually driven society from the religious right whose sole aim—with Republican Party help—seems to be to transform America into the world’s largest theocracy and herald the second coming merely by their ill-informed actions. They must be stopped; they must be challenged; they must be defeated at every turn. And it starts at the grass-roots level.
This is my new focus, my new drive, my new passion, my new crusade. It is a fight we must win if American is to remain true to the foundational principles of our founding. We must once again draw the line between public and private life, secular and religious. Yes, we as a society should be a moral and just civilization, but in promoting moral character, we must uphold human dignity, freedom, equality (before the law) and liberty; our laws take root in the constitution and English common law tradition, not the Holy Bible. Morality, and moral principles are possible outside the realm of religious dictate, and no single code of morals should (or can) be thrust upon a nation as ethnically and culturally diverse as America has become. Morality should not and realistically, cannot be legislated. That is not to say that there should not be societal norms, but again individual and collective human dignity, equality (before the law) and freedom should always be maintained. There is little if no place for religious scripture and law inside the body of civil common law; separation of Church and State must be maintained, if we as a nation are to remain free.
It is ironic that as our serviceman fight for freedom, equality, and liberty overseas, it is being systematically dismantled here at home. Citizens in eleven states voted for state sanctioned bigotry and discrimination in the guise of ill-conceived constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage without proper proof that said marriage do real and verifiable harm to the institution of marriage. Shame on them! But I digress…
As we head into the Christmas season, with its platitude driven slogans and mind-numbing commercials that have little or nothing to do with celebrating the birth of Christ, my soul is unburdened, and my mind clear and focused. I have wallowed in self-pity for the allowable amount of time; I must now rejoin the battle to save America from not only the oppression of theocratic rule, but from fanatical, bottom-line driven, human eating Wal-Mart as well…stay tuned!