By special request, here is the end rant to this week’s episode of
I have a friend back in my hometown and she’ll call me from time to time, during which we always talk politics. Let’s call her Nadine.
Nadine was a luke-warm Obama supporter in 2008 but now thinks he’s kinda crazy and might bring the economy and the nation to utter collapse during a second term. But here’s the thing: she’s not voting for Romney. She’s going to vote third party. Her state is going red already, doncha know. She called last night to wish us a happy anniversary and maybe that wasn’t the best time to unload on her, but then I didn’t bring it up this time, again. Here she goes on and on about how worried she is that Obama is going to SOMEHOW pull this out and what a disaster that would be, and I’m once again explaining to her that Romney has the record and is an extraordinary opportunity for Americans to get a) a man with the right skills and expertise for the moment and b) is a demonstrably good and moral man. This is not a lesser-of-two-evils choice.
And what she says to me, I couldn’t believe it. She says, “Well, convince me. I want to change my mind.” That’s when I went off on her. I told her that she was not remotely interested in changing her mind, that she wasn’t even using that mind and that change was not possible for an organ that had atrophied. I told her if she really wanted to change her mind she would have already, that there was plenty of information out there that fully demonstrated the distance between Obama and Romney–and it is vast. If she’s not aware of it by now, that’s just willful ignorance. She could do the legwork herself. We’d already been down this road too many times. She’s aware of it based on our conversations, yet she’s not smart enough to add a couple of single digit numbers together to come up with the obvious and correct answer?
No, I told her, what you’re interested in, Nadine, is purity. It’s not about what you think; it’s about what everyone else will think of you. And considering what she thinks of Barack Obama, that is the most cowardly, illogical, selfish political stance I have ever seen. Worse than Obots in 2008. She’s not smart enough to use the greatest gift our founders bequeathed to us: the secret ballot.
When politics comes down to purity, fashion, red-state versus blue-state bragging rights, and caring what everyone else thinks instead of doing the right thing based on what you think, I’d suggest we already have the government we deserve. And we might be destined for more of it. That is unacceptable to me, and that’s why I went off on her. I’ve known her for years and like a lot of people I know, she has to be pried from her preconceived notions with a healthy dose of unflowery truth. I must say, she took it well. We’ll see what she does. We’re still talking to each other, which is more than I can say for most of my Obot friends from 2008.
I mention it here because it occurs to me that there are a few people listening who could also stand to hear it. I absolutely believe that everyone owns their vote, but I also believe that this great country was founded on a willingness of people to share disparate ideas through the vehicles of rhetoric and dialogue so they become known to each other. People own their votes, but they also own their voice. I just used mine.