I start a new Masters Degree class tomorrow, so my blogging time will become more limited. I will still post new blogs, but maybe not as consistently. With the time I had left, I thought I would explain my personal political evolution.
I grew up in a conservative household. As a kid at the dinner table, I watched my Dad rant at the nightly news on T.V. as they presented their left-wing bias rather unapolegetically to the American audience. Remember, in the 1980s, there was no Internet or alternative media worth mentioning, the word of Brokaw/Jennings/Rather was more or less divine to most people. Let's face it, there are exceptions of course, but quite often, children retain the politics of their parents, and I am one who did. I always hear how K-12 teachers are supposed to be politically neutral when teaching, but some of my fondest memories of elementary school involve my political arguments with Mr. Livie, my 7th grade history teacher. It was 1984 - He was voting for Mondale, and I of course supported Reagan (as much as a 7th grader could). We argued back and forth about the election, and I loved every minute of it. When I attended Junior College in the early '90s, I stuck to my conservative guns, but I do remember being "pro-choice" regarding abortion. That is the only issue I can think of where I ever could have been considered a liberal. What are my views on abortion now? I am still "pro-choice", but in a different way: You made your choice when you chose to have sex. If the result is a baby, then you live with the consequences. If you don't want the baby, there are plenty of couples out there who are dying to adopt. Yes, yes - I know there is always the rape, incest, health of the mother contingency. This represents about 1% or so of abortion cases. You can deal with those on an individual basis as they arise. As for the other 99% of unwanted pregnancies out there, why should the baby suffer the consequences of someone else's behavior? But I digress....
As I grew older, my conservative bent did not straighten out, and I actually reached the point where left the Republican party in my mid-20s because I decided they were becoming too liberal. I actually still think that way, but I am now older and pragmatic enough to compromise my principles and vote for Republicans from time to time. Voting Democrat is simply out of the question. There used to be conservative Democrats, such as Congressmen Larry MacDonald, Sam Nunn, and Zell Miller (all from Georgia by the way), but they are now dead or retired. Nowadays, I defy you to show me a conservative Democrat who has any influence in their party.
After leaving the Republicans, I registered with the Libertarian Party. I was pretty happy with them but for two issues that finally caused me to leave them too. The LP believes in totally open borders, a position with which I totally disagree. And while I agree with their positions on the drug war and legalization, they are so totally obsessed about marijuana that it is all they talk about. Now, everyone looks at the LP as those guys who want to smoke pot all the time. Find another issue as your anchor folks! I left the LP just in time for the 2004 national elections. I decided that it was so important that the ghoulish and socialist John Kerry not become President, that I registered as a Republican so I could take part in the California primaries.
So I am currently a Republican in Name Only, but on the conservative side instead of the liberal side. If you were to match me up with a political party that most reflects my views, I think I would be a member of the Constitution Party, but they strike me as this little private club where a bunch of guys in pocket protectors sit around and congratulate themselves for being so exclusive rather than trying to make an impact on the national political scene. What needs to happen is that all these different conservative third parties (Libertarian, Constitution, Independent, Reform, etc.), need to put aside their differences, hammer out a platform they can all compromise and agree upon, and officially join forces. As long as they continue to hold on to their little third party fiefdoms, they are all dead in the water.
So here I sit, essentially a man without a party. The Republicans are spending more money now than Clinton ever did, they are doing nothing about our southern border problem, and the spineless leadership in Congress gives in to the Democrats at every turn, even though they are in the majority. How am I supposed to support that? However, like I said earlier, unless the third parties unite, divided they will stay, and conquered they will remain.
Good Day to You, Sir