I'm a Pennsylvanian. I'm a Republican. I'm voting Kerry.
I've voted Republican in every Presidential Election since I turned voting age. I even went through a phase where I was in the Young Republicans and helped local candidates campaign (including Rick Santorum, now a PA senator who has turned into a homophobic asshole.) My allegiance to the Republican party was born mainly from the Reagan years, not from any family history or even from any actual deep knowlege of platforms and issues. I suppose it's a little like being a Steelers fan just because you live in Pittsburgh. And yeah, I listened to Rush back during his zenith Clinton era.
I voted for Bush in the 2000 election. Not that my single PA vote mattered, but I was relieved when the Florida tally came back in Bush's favor. Gore was boring, Gore was too firmly attached to the embarrassment of Bill Clinton's sex life, Gore had the video game-hating Leiberman on his ticket.
And now I'm disgusted by my choice. Bush lied to us about Iraq's military, weapons, and the country's relationship to bin Laden. (When confronted with the "lie" issue by Michael Moore, Bill O'Reilly said that it wasn't a lie, just that Bush acted on faulty intelligence. Bill, the US President does not get to invade an entire nation based on faulty intelligence. Faulty intelligence that was debunked less than a year later. And we have to expect that somebody has to take the fall for that, and it ought to be the jerk who okayed the whole plan.) With no cause but a wrong one, we destroyed Iraq's infrastructure... an infrastructure we and our allies helped build back when the Ayatollah was the World's Greatest Enemy. Now we have guaranteed the instability of the entire region, as exploding trucks take out 30 people a day... as every US-backed government official finds a shiny target on his back... as desert bandits pick apart our own forces... as al Qaeda continues to operate and threaten.
Had we centered our operations in Afghanistan instead of following Bush's huge red Hussein herring, we might have silenced bin Laden by now. It would have meant even more damage to Afghanistan, probably more damage to nearby nations as we tracked him over borderlines... but no country in the world could have faulted us. Because we were not the aggressor, we didn't ask for this. And we will bring bin Laden to our justice.
But instead we hung a fateful u-turn and invaded a country that nobody - not even the Bush squad - continues to believe was involved. Sure, Hussein was a despot. But there are despots everywhere. The only despots Bush is interested in deposing are those that sit on "our" oil reserves. (Why can't we spend our resources on developing alternatives to oil? We should all be in electric cars by now. Dick Cheney, go fuck yourself.)
And then there's the fact that one-time fratboy drunkard George W. Bush is a Jesus-pumped born again Christian. Thanks to his religion-based policy making attempts, we're finally seeing just how deceitful and close-minded Christianity is. Sure, America was once a home for everyone regardless of faith, creed or color - as long as you adhered to the Christian mindset anyway. We've always been a Melting Pot in name only. Now that non-Christian population segments are large enough to demand the same rights and privileges, the supposedly loving and welcoming Christian America has turned them out. Homosexuals should not be allowed to marry. An athiest will never be elected. It's a child, not a choice. They are all hopeless sinners and their continued existence should not be allowed to sully the Christian States of America.
As some of us have always known, Christianity is a facade for an exclusive club where the rules are strict and the minds are closed. This is exactly why the Founding Fathers wanted the church separated from the state, because we should not have religious dogma dictating our nation's policies.
I happened across one of those horrible religious programs yesterday, where it's hosted by some god-loving married couple and they interview someone that any other interview program would label a "nutjob." Well, it's always the man who interviews and the woman sites on his right and nods ferociously at every ill-presented point.
On this particular program, they were "interviewing" a Jewish gentleman - and they went to great lengths to point out how similar they all were, despite the Jesus problem - and one of his main points was to decry homosexual marriage. As is always the case, the chief complaint was that it will ruin the foundation of marriage in this country. Exactly how it will do that was left unsaid - the horrors of homosexual behavior obvious enough - but for the grandiose statement that it will invariably lead to group marriage, incest and pedophilia.
Aside: we had a manager at work make this same claim this week. He said he was opposed to homosexual marriage because then two men could adopt a young boy and molest him. He is, naturally, a flag-waving card-carrying Jesuphile. It escapes him that a heterosexual couple could molest an adopted child. It escapes him that he, as a male attracted to females, could molest his own daughters. It escapes him that homosexuality does not equal pedophilia. He's simply a close-minded asshole.
But back to that stupid TV show. Not thirty seconds after encouraging the audience (which I can safely assume, as a broadcasting professional, consists exclusively of people over 60) to pester their elected officials to come out against giving gays the vote, as it were - not thirty seconds later the male host (the only one that ever matters, right?) launched into a diatribe about how much Christians love everyone. Everyone.
Everyone like them.
And Bush is right there with them, parading his religion as if it's the only thing that matters in this country.
So I hear that Pennsylvania could shape up to be an important state in this election - which is why both Bush and Kerry have stumped us a hundred times each. You know, I watched some of Kerry's speech at our capitol building last night, and it was the same annoying government-speak I don't buy from any party. Freedom is not free, America can be great again, blah blah blah. So it's not Kerry's talk that is swaying me (he's purposefully not talking about the homosexual issue so as to woo more votes from morons.)
It's Bush's actions that have turned me against him. I'm a lifelong Republican. I'm a Pennsylvanian. I'm voting Kerry. I hope there are more like me.