Monday, May 3, 2010
Poor, Poor Political Me
I am NOT political. I have stated it before and I will probably go to my grave screeching those words. I do in fact though....know when I became piqued by the idea of politics. It was about the same time I discovered message boards. I had joined one that my then favorite radio disc jockey had started. It was local and it was a lot of fun. I was enchanted and many an evening I would stay up past my bed time laughing and joking with my new friends from the message board. Sadly though, my favorite disc jockey was to move onto greener pastures and a much larger market, so my new found friends and I disbanded....until one day when I received an email from the creator of the old radio message board. He invited me to another board which he ran. This one was a politically conservative board (which at the time I suspicioned that I was politically conservative)...so I tried it out. At first...it just wasn't a good fit at all. I realized then and there....I was politically illiterate. I could no more carry on an intelligent conversation with these people than the man in the moon. And what was worse was....these were not "think tank" or political analyst type people. These were average citizens: housewives, blue collar workers, with maybe a lawyer or engineer thrown in the mix just to keep it interesting.
These people knew their politics. They read the paper, watched the news, and were not just up-to-date, but up-to-the-minute on what was going on both domestically and abroad. I was astonished. This was a world that I didn't even know existed.
While my first instinct was to turn and run...because I knew that I was never going to post a word and make myself look a fool with these people...instead I stayed. I became interested in how another housewife might see the world around her or how the blue collar worker viewed the president as opposed to say the lawyer or engineer. So I started reading...and as they posted links...I read different articles about what was going on in the world of politics. Before I knew it....I was actually learning. Still though....I knew so little and I was so afraid that my words on any political subject were so unintelligent....that I still refrained from posting....until one day. I was reading through the different topics and the responses....when I came upon one about abortion. Now abortion I do know something about, but in my naive little mind....I never connected it with politics. For once I was not afraid to post and I did. It opened the door to literally thousands of more posts and more political education than I could ever imagine.
Soon....I not only became intelligent enough to carry on a political conversation....but I also became intelligent enough to defend myself even when up against the staunchest liberal attack. Best of all....I knew what was going on in the world and could carry on a conversation about politics that even surprised me at times.
Soon I was even infiltrating liberal websites defending conservative thoughts, beliefs, and values. Several times I was kicked to the curb before I even opened my mouth (after they found out I was conservative), but other times I was allowed to stay so that I could be made an example of . It turned out though....I was not an example they wanted the rest of the world to see, so often my posts were either deleted or removed so others could not see them. However....I actually made some liberal friends along the way. There were a few who I never actually turned into conservatives....but they did respect my views and at the end of the day....we were able to agree to disagree. (Believe me....you don't find that with many liberals).
One day though, I woke up and I could no longer fight the good fight, or argue politics any further. While a learning experience full of new and interesting people, it was also a daunting task. You learn as you go to ignore unintelligent name calling, or child like abuse and behavior....and you never take it personally because most of us all want the same things. The problem however is often how differently we feel those things should be obtained. I just couldn't fight the same old pat liberal arguments and the same talking points over and over again. So I just left the message board.
It felt so good to not feel the need to defend myself, my beliefs, or my rights....especially since I was not a political person to begin with. For a while (a year or so....to be precise) I happily avoided the news, I turned the channel when anything heavier than The Big Bang Theory came on.....and I was in a state of bliss.
Then the world changed. What was promised was distorted or not carried through with at all. We were dealing with bailouts, a country on the verge of bankruptcy, forced health care insurance, and a president who saw nothing wrong with mocking the American people who disagreed with him. I was shocked and ashamed that I wasn't paying more attention. I had friends out there physically standing up for what they believed in and trying to save our Constitution and the rights of all of us, while I was hiding in a blissful....but very unrealistic state.
So I did the only thing a non-political woman like myself could do. I started writing. I started speaking out through my computer. Slowly I am working my way back to the message board and on the way....I am letting those who care to read what I have to say...just how I feel about the country I live in.
Why am I doing this you might ask? Especially when those who know me know that my plate is full to overflowing as it is. Because I have kids. What happens today, right now....is going to affect them tomorrow. Decisions that are being made locally, at a state level, and at a federal level are going to be my kids future and I owe it to them to make sure that future is a good one. I don't want my kids suffering the unnecessary debt of ridiculous bailouts, nor do I want them forced into health care insurance that will end up costing them more than their parents ever dreamed of paying. I want them to have the same American dream that generations before them have had and I want everyone of their Constitutional rights in tact.
Does all of this make me political? I don't know. I have had some, more educated than I say... yes. I still want to say NO! All I know is that as long as the change does not appear to be working.....I will have to speak up and speak out. Oh poor, poor political me!