Thursday, November 6, 2008
Already I deviate
I did warn that I would not always write only about horses. But I feel I have to make some comment on the election.
A comment that's more interesting than "whoo hooo", I hope! First let me say that I don't consider myself a democrat or a republican. Probably I'm more closely aligned with libertarians or old republicans, often that leaves me feeling like I have no good choices. That is how I have felt for the last 8 years at least and the start of this election season that had not it changed for me.
To be honest, I had no intention of voting for a republican president unless he/she was a serious superstar, and none of the potential candidates were. I had felt that if nothing else I needed to send a message that I was very unhappy with what they have presided over in my country the last 8 years. Starting a war, then an occupation. Ballooning our federal debt (doubled in 8 years!), dismantling our civil liberties and giving religious nutjobs credence and power they don't deserve. That's just to name a few of the obvious issues. I felt that if my vote meant anything it needed to make the republican party take a look at itself, or at least provide a swat with a newspaper as you might do to a naughty puppy (though it's hard not to feel like an ant biting an elephant at times). I had thought McCain was at least the most reasonable of the republican candidates (Ron Paul might have been interesting though). At least, until he chose Palin. That made me take a closer look and left me absolutely horrified. Now I was voting against him not only because he chose a religious nutjob with absolutely no education or experience for the potential post of President, but also because he himself could not be trusted to sit on the proverbial "big red button". I was scared.
I initially didn't care if Hillary or Obama was the candidate, either one had my vote by default. I didn't like Hillary much to be honest, and I didn't know anything about Obama. So I didn't expect to like or even feel excited or hopeful about the candidate I would ultimately vote for. Watching his poise, his constant optimism and strength while campaigning as well as seeing his willingness to learn and challenge people's assumptions made me feel increasingly confident that he would be a good leader, maybe even a great one. I don't agree with all of his positions, but of all of the democrats I could have been voting for I think we got one of the best.
Now I can dare to hope that our country will get back on track. Maybe this is the feeling my dad has talked about that pervaded the country when JFK was elected. It's new to me, and I find I really like it.