When I was a little kid in the parish school of St. Paul’s, the Holy Cross Sisters taught us, among many things, the old adage “What you are speaks so loudly to me that I cannot hear what you say.” I thought that Sister was telling us that no matter how fancifully we might speak, if we were not open and honest, people wouldn‘t listen to our high flying rhetoric. Somehow the real “me” would come across regardless of my fancy talk. I, personally, had some kind of penchant for using big words, usually incorrectly, and I never seemed to convince anyone of almost anything. However, in the course of my long life, I have come to see how wise my teachers really were. In my studies to become a clinical psychological, I read, of course, many of Freud’s works and was vastly impressed by much of his insight. Once, he wrote that his patients, no matter how clever and evasive, would ultimately tell him who they really were by communicating ““through every pore.” He, like many of us, could read between the other’s lines.
A variation on Sister’s adage, for me, has become “What you stand for comes across so loudly that I can’t see your race or your gender.” My refusal to vote for Barack Obama has nothing to do with his race –or gender—or any such factor. It has to do with his value system and norms. To imply that my decision is based on the color of his skin is an insult not only to my integrity and my relatively high I.Q. but also to my religion which specifically teaches that discrimination is sinful and needing absolution. It is also demeaning to my many African American friends with whom I have close, trusting and warm relationships. We have no hesitancy disagreeing with one another since our disagreements are generated by the issues not by race or religion or gender. But our friendship has nothing to do with one’s race or religion. Rufus and Violet whom I have known for forty years, Brother Jude who steered me through the preps for my Ph.D., Jim B., retired army staff sergeant, who has laughed with me about many funny things, John C. who joined my religion which we share joyously. The vast list of my African-American heroes who have inspired me---Thomas Sowell, Shelby Steele, Michael Steele, Clarence Thomas, Walter Williams, Alan Keyes---and on and on. All of these superior people would be stunned if I ever were to descend to the despicable level of the racist, whatever his race might be. I disagree with Obama because of his values system with which I profoundly disagree.
Obama has much about him that is charming and attractive. He has a wonderful and friendly personality. He is a very good public speaker who holds my attention through his voice and his mastery of speaking style. He has really good teeth and a radiant smile. For his age, he shoots basketball hoops surprisingly well. He seems like a good family man with affection for his wife and children.
However, there are basic factors in him which instantly conflict with my own value system. I have been told so many times that I must not vote for a candidate unless he reflects my own values. For good or ill, whether I am right or wrong, I have come to believe that the first of all values is life itself. I cannot support anti-life which I believe Obama does---from the view point of unborn babies. They have no say as to their future. He has consistently voted pro-abortion (anti-life as I see it) in his legislative career. He is 100% supportive of aborting babies------ from a legislation standpoint. He has even thrown his support to the grisly partial birth abortion practice opposing any ban on it which even the perennial anti-life people find gruesome.
It has been reported in print that when speaking to an assembly of NARAL supporters, he promised them that the very first thing he will do, if elected President, would be to sign the Freedom of Choice act, thereby, in effect, removing any restriction on abortion at any growth level of the child in the womb. He has never denied this allegation. This “value” inclines me not to vote for him. When a bill was proposed to protect babies who survive a botched abortion, he voted against protecting these new citizens and against procedures meant to help them live.
I believe this man, voted the #1 liberal in Congress, is a socialist who speaks in a coded language. He is a radical of the most divisive sort and in fact a racist in his own right. His mentor was Frank M. Davis, an avowed Communist sought for years by the FBI, in whose bungalow in Waikiki, he attended nightly bull sessions drinking and sopping up “advice.” His father, Barack Hussien Obama Sr. was a brilliant Kenyan and Harvard educated intellectual who held that there should be 100% taxation on “Asians and Europeans.” The tax burden would be back breaking making the present economic crisis seem like a Sodality party. His notion of healing our economic woes is to re- distribute wealth a la the African method which failed so dismally, as in Rhodesia or modern Zimbabwe. His notion of meeting the energy crisis is to take money from the wealthy and give it to the poor. How this solves the oil shortage escapes me. This “value” inclines me not to vote for him.
His guarded ambiguous attitude to the American military is a puzzlement. Why would he not wear an American flag on his lapel when he is a member of the United States congress? Why would he not place his hand over his heart when the National anthem was played? Does he show contempt for those of us who follow those behaviors? Or does he say by his actions that he is the patriot not we? Further, with his 173 days in Congress, I do not believe that he has the experience to deal with sophisticated world powers. His absurd notion that he will meet with anyone without preconditions speaks to me of the highest naiveté.
Further, I am disconcerted by his association with questionable people. His claims that he sat for 20 years before Pastor Wright’s fiery denunciations and revolting speeches attacking this country and never heard anything inappropriate seem wildly disingenuous. The clear “God damn America” was a symbolic slap in the face to simple people like me. His association with Wm Ayres, a man with a terrorist history which he never seems to disavow is disturbing to me. What is this mysterious “Acorn” society he belongs to? I believe that association tells us much about each other. I recall my childhood warning: Birds of a feather flock together.
While I am not enamored of the maverick, John McCain, I am forced by conscience to vote for him. McCain’s bland manner and sleepy style bore me but he has substance. If perception differs from substance, McCain is a prime example. Besides his heroic and unbelievable POW experience, he is an avowed believer in life—as am I. He is a patriot and prefers to lose a political battle than lose a military one. He believes in the American spirit of self reliance. He has real plans to solve energy crises and is not awed by the dumb protestations of those who chain themselves to trees in the name of Environmentalism.
I like being left alone to do my “thing.” If I need protection, let my government give it to me. Big Government becomes the real Big Brother which can really stifle my freedom of speech and religion. There are more than hints that Obama means restrictions on my personal life. I like freedom. I sense Obama threatens it. I can’t vote for him. He is too dangerous.
The maverick is not the same as the present administration. He is very different. And besides I am in love with his vice president.