Monday, October 06, 2008

I'm not a Bigot

I recently received the following email from a family member. Please read this then read the rebuttal I replied with. To all my family and friends who are bigots or otherwise prejudiced. Some of you have said that you can't vote republican and you won't vote for Obama so you just won't vote at all. I ask you to reconsider, we have had a religious kook in the white house for the last 8 years. You know how the country has been devasated by this man and I must say with help from the no good democratic congress. If you don't vote for Obama it is the same as a vote for McCain. Look at McCain, he looks like he has one foot in the grave already. So chances are you would end up with an even more devastating religious fanatic in the white house. Our country is bankrupt and fast becoming a third world nation. I believe all the religious fanatics will vote for McCain so be forewarned. Here is my reply (edited to protect the identity of the family member): My mother forwarded a statement that you made (I assume in an email) and I feel compelled to tell you that I must take exception to it. I do not believe that I qualify as a bigot, a racist, a sexist, or any of the negative terms generally associated with people who have a shallow mind. I have a college education, and I am gainfully employed at a newspaper that espouses a Libertarian party view even though I don't agree with everything the Libertarian Party stands for. I love my God, my family, my country and the Tennessee Volunteers (in that order). Having spent my informative years living on or near US military bases (that my dad was stationed at) I believe I have gained a great understanding of the sacrifices our military men and women make for this country - even those who only look at their service as a stepping stone to a college education. I consider myself a devout patriot citizen. I am neither Republican or Democrat. When I vote I do not see a skin color or whether the candidate has breasts or not. My first consideration when deciding on who to vote for is the candidates moral character. Not whether or not they have stumbled morally in life but rather how they dealt with and recovered from the wrong path they may have taken. It is likewise ludicrus to condemn a man or woman for the performance of another man or woman. If such were the case then I would never consider voting for a Democrat because of the lack of morals of Bill Clinton. Barack Obama is not Bill Clinton. Neither is John McCain the same as George Bush. As for a candidates age being a concern then Obama and Palin's ages should also disqualify them as they are not old enough to have the benefit of extended experience. I would much rather have an experienced older man or woman in the White House than an inexperienced one. Even the youthful Palin brings a more well-rounded experience in government than does Obama. If we were voting on experience alone then Joe Biden should be facing John McCain. As far as a "religious fanatic" in the White House - even though I don't believe Sarah Palin is a fanatic, do you honestly feel she would be worse because of her religious beliefs than say Bill Clinton, who evidently absconded from his religious beliefs when he had an extramarital affair with Monica Lewinsky in the office that our tax dollars pay for? Or that Palin would be worse than Obama, a man who has aligned himself with religious "bigots" (isn't that the word YOU used) in the recent past like Jeremiah Wright? As far as our country being bankrupt - well, the congress should hold the blame for that since they refuse to pass legislation that would regulate Wall Street, or legislation that would promote and encourage development of alternative energy sources. Without cutting our ties to oil we remain shackled to inflated prices at the pump and that is the root of America's current anxiety over our nations economic state. I do hope you rethink your position and no matter who you vote for I hope you vote for the person who is best for the job - not the person because they are a woman or black or young or old. To this I would also add that I do not believe Obama has America's best interests at heart as evidenced by passages in both of the books he has written and especially this passage from his book Audacity of Hope: 'I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.' This is definately not a man I want leading my country.