Politics confuse me. People picking sides on issues that don’t matter to them, or won’t for a lengthy period of time, while issues that affect them will be ignored for a lengthier period of time. We concentrate on issues that polarize us while living lives that us make us as middle of the road as it gets. We will dive into a debate about abortion on Facebook but not think about who would make those decisions. We draw solid lines in the sand without thinking about what we would do when we had to make that choice or if we encountered someone who was considering it. We say we are pro-life and against all abortion but are for war, the death penalty, no gun controls, and no taxes for a safety net support system that was once called food stamps or welfare. We say we are pro-choice and want women to have the right to choose, but then don’t give them the space or assistance with the choice. We are anti-war and anti-death penalty and anti-gun and anti- austerity without any choice of solving the bigger issues.
We all draw lines in the sand for now, not realizing that a choice you make today will affect you (and I) for days and weeks and years to come. We don’t realize the need for after care for a girl or young woman (or older woman) who had to choose let alone follow through, thinking that Planned Parenthood is enough. We think Planned Parenthood only does abortions, without realizing they provide a needed service (reproductive care) in some of the worst neighborhoods around.
We think war is good or bad, not necessary for a time, and unnecessary when our name is linked to “occupation” instead of “freedom”. We think guns are our right or only for killing of inner city youth. We think the death penalty is revenge and just or completely politicized and highly corrupt, instead of thinking that…well it is corrupted and highly unjust. We think “when I am rich I don’t want to pay over 20% personal income taxes, so I won’t vote it now” or “Our government should pay me when I cant find work”; when we should realize that the tax system is broken and can only be fixed with more take and less give in the immediate.
Politics confuse me because I cant find someone who thinks like me to vote for. I am pro-life. Or I should say, I am pro-all life. I don’t think we should kill babies, kids, teens or adults. So I am not for abortion as birth control. I am not for continuing a war and occupation that is costing more money than we have and more lives than are needed. I think the majority of inmates need to be rehabilitated and forgiven instead of institutionalized, including those on death row. I see no need for assault or fully automatic weapons and artillery that will kill soldiers and police, because I want to believe their authority is to be respected. I have no issue with hunting rifles and weapons for self defense if you know what you are doing and permitted, like a car (a deadly weapon). And it should be no surprise to most of you I want my taxes to help people stay in homes, eat, and have medical care, including myself.
But the thing that confuses me most about politics is that many people spend time debating, talking and writing (like this) about what they want and how it should be done without realizing our Representatives, Congressmen and even the President have far less power than we think. Our president can’t change the country or the world. As can be seen by the last few decades. We are hearing many of the same discussions we did in 1992 and 2002- war, debt, abortion…yet if we stopped spending time and money on this discussion and started acting we could do a lot more.
If we listened to young women who are pregnant, alone and don’t have the money to raise a child. If we knew our neighbors instead of feared them. If we shared our resources within our community we would have more to help those just outside it. If we watched what we ate we would need less chemicals to treat our ailments and therefore less healthcare. If we spent less time fighting and more time listening and forgiving we would be friends instead of enemies…
Of course these are just my opinions, I could be right.