You'd never know it from what I write in this space but I grew up being a potential Republican.
My father never, to my knowledge, voted for a Democrat in a time when West Virginia was a solidlyl 'Blue' state (though that terminology wasn't around back then). And, for a time, as a teen, I was a big Barry Goldwater fan. I even spray painted a building in Anawalt--my only foray into graffiti--with "AU H2O". I should have gotten in trouble but my father and his two brothers were all significant people in our little (500 people) town, so I got away with it.
Then, in a debate, Goldwater (who to me at the time seemed to represent a quasi -libertarian point of view that was attractive to my high school brain) said he would privatize the Tennessee Valley Authority and he lost me. Southern West Virginia got their electricity from the TVA and I suddenly realized I was a socialist leaning, left-wing Democrat.
After that, my father and I had heated discussions about politics. It was my adolescent rebellion to declare myself a Democrat.
And like him, from the other side, I've never voted for a Republican.
And, at this point in history, I'm proud of that.
Republicans want to take healthcare from 11,000,000 people, many of them children.
Republicans want to cut back drastically on Food Stamps.
Republicans (many of them) are Climate Change deniers.
Republicans seek to block the right to vote for millions of Americans.
Republicans want to block a treaty with Iran over nuclear power and weapons (even as Iran is one of the countries most involved in opposing Isis.)
Republicans want the tax code to favor the rich.
Republicans are opposed to raising the minimum raise, a woman's right to choose and equal rights for GLBTQ folks.
Republicans would put boots on the ground again in the Mid-East.
Republicans would back Israel no matter what (refusal to stop settlements and opposition to the Two State Solution not withstanding).
And I come from a Republican family.
My father wouldn't recognize the current Republican/Tea Party group as "Republican" at all. He was an Eisenhower, Rockefeller, Brooke Republican.
"Who are these people?" he would ask, if he could.
I ask the same thing. Is this really one of the two American parties or something else altogether?
Goldwater wouldn't recognize this fiasco as his party. I'm sure of that.
God help us....
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