I received a call today from a woman conducting a poll for Time magazine. They had asked me some questions: who would I vote for, what are my views on various issues, mainly what I think about Sarah Palin, etc, etc, etc., which made me think that I should probably address this on my blog. As a rule, I avoid talking about politics at work, with my friends and on the blogosphere. The chances of persuading anyone are close to zero, but there is a real danger of getting into a fight or alienating someone. If I am asked directly, I don't avoid answering, but generally I do not initiate these discussion.
However, some things have been brewing for a while, and after all, this is an election year. So I will say a few things and probably will not touch on that subject again.
Most of my answers to most of the political questions and issues could be summarized in one word: undecided. I personally don't think it's a cop-out. I just find that most issues are not black and white, and a simple yes or no would not suffice in solving them. So I came up with a few topics, which I will discuss here and why I haven't made up my mind yet. And then, hopefully, I will hold my peace.
Are you a Democrat or a Republican? Neither. Both parties disgust me to no end, and if there were another party I could agree with (no, Green Party will not do), I would gladly support them. I find that both parties hold positions that are phylosophically incompatible with each other (i.e. Republicans are pro-Capital punishment, but generally anti-euthanasia. By the way, I do not support euthanasia). Those inconsistencies in their views could only be explained by one thing: who is footing the bill. As they say in Russia: the one who pays orders the music. So basically, I believe both parties have sold out long ago.
Are you pro-life or pro-choice? Again, neither. I do not believe that a woman (or a man) is free to do whatever she wishes with her body. "My body, my choice" carries little weight with me. Abortion in most cases is preventable, unnecessary and evil. In most, but not all. On the other hand, how do you compel a woman to carry a child that she doesn't want? How do you force her to give up activities dangerous for a fetus for the next 8 months of so? Does a woman with complicated pregnancy, little means and without health insurance really have a choice? What constitutes danger to a woman's life? I don't trust the government to come up with fair guidelines.
Universal health insurance. I am very much pro. I would love to see every American guaranteed to receive medical care without the worry of affordability. It disgusts me to no end that often times important medical decisions are based solely or mainly on financial means of a patient. It is absolutely unfathomable to me that someone would not get proper and necessary medication because it is not affordable or not covered by a health insurance. Then again, countries with universal health coverage are not without their problems. When the government foots the bill, it is forced to ration out the medical care. Everyone knows that getting a mammogram in Canada takes months. Yes, it doesn't cost anything, but it takes months. Those months could mean the difference between life and death, saving or losing the breast; you get the gist.
The war in Iraq? I don't know what to think any more. However, I am sure that we were not given all the reason for our involvement there, and the chances are we will never find out. I find it particularly insulting that the government thinks the average American cannot handle the truth.
Obama or McCain? What do you think about Sarah Palin? Don't ask me those questions. I haven't decided. I am not excited about either candidate, and I haven't formed an opinion on Sarah Palin yet. All I know is that with her coming back to work the day after giving birth makes me look bad. And I don't like that. That's the only thing I know for sure...