[NOTE FROM THE FAR-OFF YEAR OF 2018: THIS POST WAS A BIG F*CKING DEAL BECAUSE IT WAS A MAJOR, PUBLIC BREAK FROM MY DEEPLY CONSERVATIVE FAMILY.
YES, IT COST ME.
NO, I HAVE NO REGRETS.
SO YOU KNOW, SOME OF MY VIEWS HAVE SHIFTED EVEN FURTHER FROM THIS POST, BUT I WOULD STILL VOTE FOR OBAMA AGAIN IF I HAD THE CHANCE.]
I am voting for Obama.
This is going to be a very long post. I’m including links – a lot of links – to back up everything I say.
This post may make you angry.
That’s okay. These issues have made me angry.
My political stance can best be described as independent. I’m not Conservative. I’m not Liberal. I’m neither Republican nor Democrat. There are, however, a few issues that are hot buttons for me. One of those issues is gossip.
Table of Contents
Racism and Terrorism
About the rumor mill: let’s start with Scripture. Proverbs 18:17: “The first to plead his case seems right, Until another comes and examines him.” Why does this matter? Because it means that for anyone to simply take a statement and run with it – BEFORE actually researching anything – makes him or her a fool.
Now before we get into “real” issues, I’m going to take a look at just a couple of the rumors flying around the internet.
A. Obama isn’t an American Citizen.
Okay, folks. Time for the facts. We have his birth certificate.
It’s fake, the rumor-mongers cry, and the circulated emails promptly make the following claims: the birth certificate doesn’t have a raised seal, it isn’t signed, there’s a strange halo around the letters, the certificate number is blacked out, the document is a “certification of birth,” not a “certificate of birth,” etc.
The proof says otherwise.
i. One: other people from Hawaii have the same “certificate of live birth,” including description problems like “White” and “Caucasian” both standing in as “Race” for parentage. Jeremy Sott Smith and Patricia Decosta.
ii. Two: there was a birth announcement in the paper: Close-up and the whole announcement.
iii. These people went and saw it in person. They took excellent photos of it, too.
It has the raised seal.
It has the signature.
It has the certificate number.
It has everything it needs. There’s even a photo of a man holding it, proving it is not simply a photoshopped image.
iv. Let’s not forget that the “lawsuit” regarding this paperwork has been thrown out of court as “frivolous and not worthy of discussion.”
v. If at this point you really believe that every document here “can be faked and therefore is faked,” then no proof will ever reach you. Then real facts don’t matter. Then nothing does except for your own bias.
B. Obama was sworn in as senator on a Koran.
Okay. Where’s the proof?
No, I’m serious. Show me the proof.
I have searched and searched and searched. Other people have searched and searched and searched. Are you going to tell me that a man can be sworn in as Senator of the United States on a Koran and that NOT ONE PERSON has a video or a photograph? That, in fact, there is not one single eye witness?
Well, there is a video – of a black Representative named Keith Ellison being sworn in on a Koran. Video here and article here.
However, that isn’t Obama.
Please, please don’t tell me that all black men look alike to you. Please don’t tell me that.
C. Michelle Obama stayed at the Waldorf and ordered caviar and lobster!
Number one, she has every right to eat lobster and caviar. Nevertheless, this is being held up as proof that Obama isn’t willing to sacrifice the way “regular” Americans are. Somehow.
Number two, the New York Times has retracted its story.
The original email – in case you missed it and its inflammatory email. There’s even a “receipt.” Look at that – a photoshopped document. So I guess it’s not just the rabid liberals who are doing it.
Now for context issues. You remember that little word, “context?” Remember how taking something like a Bible verse OUT of context is how cults are created? Well, Obama’s words tend to be taken out of context. A LOT. I’m going to give you two of the biggies:
A. “I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.”
This has been used to say that Obama is really a Muslim. However, the context of that quote comes in the wake of violence that surged in this country against anyone with dark skin after 9/11. I remember quite well; Hindus, Hispanics, and more were simply brutalized, even in my own neighborhood near Philadelphia, just because people thought they might be Muslim – and all Muslims were automatically terrorists now in the minds of those panicked thugs. Link and link and link and link and link.
What Obama said here – which you can see for yourself if you bother to check – is that if the political winds shifted (as they have in this country before, making it difficult for people who were NOT Caucasian or of a particular religion), he would stand by the side of those innocent Muslims who had nothing to do with 9/11, who were just people trying to make their way through life, who DID NOT DESERVE to be treated badly because of the color of their skin and the name of their scriptures.
That doesn’t say “Secret Muslim” to me. It says “civil rights advocate.”
Here’s the other biggie:
B. “But the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and sort of more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society.” … “I think that there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalitions of power through which you bring about redistributive change and in some ways we still suffer from that.”
Ironically, this may not be familiar to you because it’s been so horribly misquoted. I’ve seen variations like, “it’s a tragedy that redistribution of wealth was not pursued.” But that isn’t what he said.
(By the way, according to the same people who claimed Obama was a Muslim, this also makes him a Marxist.
At the same time.
Never mind the fact that Marxism and Islam are so ideologically different that this suggestion is completely absurd.)
This statement of Obama’s is being spread around as “proof” that he is going to take money from the rich and give it to welfare addicts. Problem is, that isn’t what this means in context.
Obama here is discussing the case of Brown vs. the Board of Education in 1957, which ended segregation in public schools. Remember this?
Segregation of white and Negro children in the public schools of a State solely on the basis of race, pursuant to state laws permitting or requiring such segregation, denies to Negro children the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment — even though the physical facilities and other “tangible” factors of white and Negro schools may be equal.
In this circumstance, the government had to use something called punitive taxation – a threat of withholding federal funding – in order to get the school board to obey and provide fair services to those children who were not white.
What does this have to do with redistribution of wealth? I’ll tell you: nothing.
Obama was talking about the fact that redistributing federal funding is often an effective way to force institutions into following civil rights laws. That’s it. That’s the great big statement. This doesn’t make him a Marxist.
Let’s not forget that Reagan used punitive taxation (as this link among others shows). If Reagan could do it and not be a Marxist, I’d like to know why this statement makes Obama into one.
A fun little link on Obama and the socialism accusations: YouTube video. I have to agree with what he says here; this campaign IS getting to the point where people will say Obama is socialist because he shared his toys in kindergarten.
Racism, Terrorism, Etc.
I hope by now that this has got you thinking. However, just to clear a few more things up –
A. Obama and Bill Ayers: no, there is no connection with Obama and terrorism. Link and link and link.
B. On Reverend Wright: no, Obama is not a racist. Link and link.
Honestly, I hate having to mention Wright at all. The fact is that just because someone connected with Obama made an inflammatory statement does not mean that Obama automatically believes it.
People at McCain’s rallies and Palin’s rallies regularly scream racial epithets, and Palin doesn’t even bother to correct them. Does that mean McCain is a racist?
Did you also forget that half of Obama’s family is white? Yeah, that looks like a hate-filled racist to me. Sure.
The fact is, you have to look at Obama’s record: what has he said? What has he done? Nothing to indicate Jeremiah Wright’s level of racism. Unless there is direct proof that Obama himself has the kind of prejudice that Wright demonstrated, then it’s ridiculous to claim that these two very different men believe the same things.
Now on to real politics.
The Nuts and Bolts: Real Politics
1. Nuts and bolts time: Obama’s tax plan helps the majority of the country. Don’t tell me “it’ll only help welfare people,” because that’s nonsense. Most Americans make LESS than $200,000 – in fact, 60% make less than $67,000 – and will therefore benefit from this. That means, to make it clear, thatObama is actually representing his constituency.
“To get Obama’s new refund checks, most taxpayers would have to have a job, a home mortgage, or save $1,000 a year. It is not the old concept of ‘money for nothing.'”
Obama’s tax plan explained on YouTube.
McCain’s plan doesn’t take that into account. McCain’s, in fact, benefits only those who make more than $250,000.00, which is a very small percentage and leaves normal people like me, like my friends, like my family, my church people, out in the cold. In essence, McCain really thinks that if you give COMPANIES tax-breaks, they’ll pass that on to the employees.
Sure they will.
Have you seen the profits big companies have made lately? Exxon-Mobil made $1287.00 dollars profit per second in 2007 and more than 40 BILLION DOLLARS profit last year
For 2008, they’ve already shattered their record for quarterly earnings, with a net profit of 14 BILLION DOLLARS.
In fact, the top ten corporate quarterly earnings of all time all belong to Exxon-Mobile.
I’m still waiting for it to “trickle down” to the tax-payers.
Projected under McCain’s tax plan? An extra 3 billion dollars’ profit for the oil companies.
2. Obama’s plans for health insurance include little things like this: “No one will be turned away because of a pre-existing condition or illness.” Link and link. He also plans to cut rising health care costs.
McCain’s idea? Well, he hasn’t addressed pre-existing conditions at all, and what he intends to do is give a “$5,000 refundable tax credit” for couples and “half that” – $2500 – for individuals.
That’s nice. Unfortunately, health-care currently costs an average annual per-employee cost of $9,080.00 in 2008 with a projected average of $9,660.00 by 2009.
Check out figure 3 in that link. Look at how the cost has climbed every year. Look at the costs for families. Look at the fact that for retirees and their families, the projected cost is up to nearly $19,000.00 for 2009.
McCain also plans to tax any employer-paid health benefits.
I would love to know how $5000.00 is going to cover that.
Since McCain hasn’t mentioned anything about pre-existing conditions and since he hasn’t addressed preventing health care providers from charging whatever they want, privately purchased health care simply isn’t feasible for most of the population.
Companies can barely afford to give health care to their employees as it is. Once those benefits are taxed, it’s over.
3. McCain also plans to cut 1.3 TRILLION DOLLARS from Medicare and Medicaid. I have family who, right now, are only alive because of those programs; and the baby-boom generation is reaching the age where these programs are needed.
4. Obama on Israel: “When I am president, the United States will stand shoulder to shoulder with Israel.” … “That effort begins with a clear and strong commitment to the security of Israel: our strongest ally in the region and its only established democracy. That will always be my starting point.”
Then we have this:
Brian Williams: “No one is suffering more than the Palestinian people.” Do you stand by that remark?
Obama: Well, keep in mind what the remark actually, if you had the whole thing, said. And what I said is nobody has suffered more than the Palestinian people from the failure of the Palestinian leadership to recognize Israel, to renounce violence, and to get serious about negotiating peace and security for the region.
No, these are not in conflict.
These statements (among hundreds of others) show that Obama is considering both sides of this problem. While you may agree with Israel or not, I think you can at least acknowledge that wishing really hard won’t make problems go away. Neither will simply displacing one or the other group of people; all that’s going to do is make the conflict worse.
Give me a president who is going to strive for peace here. Not for one group or the other being tossed out.
“My view is that the United States’ special relationship with Israel obligates us to be helpful to them in the search for credible partners with whom they can make peace, while also supporting Israel in defending itself against enemies sworn to its destruction.”
By the way, Obama’s supposed Muslim comrades are angry over this. He exhibits such strange behavior for a radical Muslim, doesn’t he?
5. Palin horrifies me.
Let me explain this. She claims to be a Christian; all right. Lots of people claim to be Christians.
a. However, she manages to do things like signing into law that rape victims have to pay for their own health kits. Link and link and yes, this is real, link and link.
Some people are trying to claim it’s debunked. Why? Because women weren’t actually charged during the time the law was on the books.
Here’s the problem with that: it doesn’t matter if the law was obeyed. It doesn’t even matter who followed it. What matters is she signed it into law, and that either means (a) she’s a monster, or (b) she doesn’t read what she signs.
b. The latter, by the way, seems to be true. She doesn’t read.
COURIC: And when it comes to establishing your world view, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this — to stay informed and to understand the world?
PALIN: I’ve read most of them again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media —
COURIC: But what ones specifically? I’m curious.
PALIN: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years.
COURIC: Can you name any of them?
PALIN: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news.
Righto. Then we have this one:
COURIC: You’ve cited Alaska’s proximity to Russia as part of your foreign policy experience. What did you mean by that?
PALIN: That Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and on our other side, the land– boundary that we have with– Canada. It– it’s funny that a comment like that was– kind of made to– cari– I don’t know, you know? Reporters–
PALIN: Yeah, mocked, I guess that’s the word, yeah.
COURIC: Explain to me why that enhances your foreign policy credentials.
PALIN: Well, it certainly does because our– our next door neighbors are foreign countries. They’re in the state that I am the executive of. And there in Russia–
COURIC: Have you ever been involved with any negotiations, for example, with the Russians?
PALIN: We have trade missions back and forth. We– we do– it’s very important when you consider even national security issues with Russia as Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where– where do they go? It’s Alaska. It’s just right over the border. It is– from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to– to our state.
Let me remind you that the Republican party has had plenty of time since then to explain these statements away; they haven’t even tried. This woman does not belong in the White House. Is this really how you want Christians to be represented? Stupid but cheerful, cute but cruel, foolish and short-sighted, enthusiastic and dangerous? She makes the rest of us who claim to be Christians look like morons.
c. Another biggie. Palin says she wants to help children with disabilities, especially since her child is autistic. But then, she turns around and mocks “fruit fly research” – see the clip on YouTube – even though her OWN CHILD has benefited.
See for yourself:
Down Syndrome: Link and link and link and link.
Of course, that’s just her daughter. Her nephew has autism – and he’s benefited too: Link and link and link and link and link.
d. Another reason she terrifies me is this belief of hers: Someone else did it in government, therefore, I can do it.
CNN: Troopergate, whatever. …you violated the ethics. … But was it a mistake to allow him to use the governor’s office to that extent?
Palin: Not when you look at other governors’ track records when they had their spouse as for instance [former Alaska Gov. Frank Murkowski] had his spouse as his top adviser, and she was in meetings, she was in the office so, you know, kinda, of a double standard here.
So a double standard means it’s okay?
e. With that word “socialism” flying around all the time, I ought to make this clear: she pretty obviously doesn’t actually know what socialism means. Palin is the governor of a state that gives its citizens a check based on oil company profits. “We’re set up, unlike other states in the union, where it’s collectively Alaskans own the resources. So we share in the wealth when the development of these resources occurs.”
I’m not sure what she thinks that kind of policy is called. I’d love to know what name she’s given it.
f. She and McCain are already splintering apart over something as stupid as clothes. If this doesn’t worry you, it should: Link and link and link and link and link.
“A senior adviser to John McCain told CNN’s Dana Bash that the comments about her wardrobe “were not the remarks we sent to her plane this morning.” Palin did not discuss the wardrobe story at her rally in Kissimmee later in the day.”
6. The only issue regarding Obama that made me pause was abortion – and this is NOT as simple as you think.
a. Do you need the reminder that McCain supports stem-cell research? Where do you think the stem-cells come from? The number one source of is aborted fetuses.
b. McCain stated himself that he does NOT intend to overturn Roe vs. Wade during his presidency. Guess who said this: “I’d love to see a point where Roe v. Wade is irrelevant, and could be repealed because abortion is no longer necessary. But certainly in the short term, or even the long term, I would not support repeal of Roe v. Wade, which would then force women in America to [undergo] illegal and dangerous operations.”
That means McCain is not blanket-pro-life. If you were going to vote for him because you think he’s pro-life, think again.
c. His wife doesn’t think it should be overturned, either.
d. Of course, other times, he says it should be overturned. Hmm.
e. You know what? He doesn’t seem to be able to make up his mind at all
f. Oh, that’s just in the past, you say? Sure thing – except that he seriously considered a pro-choice running mate.
The fact is that McCain changes his answer depending on his audience. Don’t forget that the issue which put Bush ahead of him in the 2000 primaries was that McCain was pretty much pro-choice and has voted that way consistently prior to 2000.
[Personal rant]Time for a reality check: Roe vs. Wade cannot be overturned by any one president. THINK ABOUT THIS. Reagan couldn’t do it. Bush Sr. couldn’t. Bush Jr. couldn’t. Making the choice to vote SIMPLY ON THAT ONE ISSUE is a guarantee of failure. If you want to have a voice in this country, if you want people to LISTEN to you about abortion, then you need to stop putting people in the White House who are pro-life AND YET are willfully ignorant, shallow, and war-hungry.[/personal rant]
d. Obama’s stance: he states specifically that abortion is a tragic circumstance, one that should be avoided if at all possible. He has stated this throughout the entirety of his political career. Unlike McCain, he’s been consistent. He has said that he doesn’t know when life begins, and while I may disagree with him, I acknowledge and respect that even while being interviewed in churches, he has kept his answer the same.
Give me an honest man whose opinions I don’t agree with over a dishonest man who lies ANY DAY.
7. The War: McCain wants to keep going in Iraq. Obama, on the other hand, wants to pull OUT of Iraq and focus on the real issue: Al Qaeda and the Taliban. Link and link.
McCain speaks in generalities about Iraq, ignoring the $2,000,000.00 spent each day on this campaign when people in THIS COUNTRY cannot go to the doctor.
Obama is actually focusing on the terrorists – not on a country that had little to do with 9/11 and subsequent threats. Let me ask you something.
What have we accomplished in Iraq?
We removed Hussein. Great! What else?
Think hard about this answer.
What have we accomplished? What have we or Iraq gained?
Well, a lot of deaths.
Massive property damage.
A depleted military.
A country so sick of war that if we really needed to do it – against, say, some country hell-bent on developing a nuclear threat – it’s doubtful the American people would rise to the occasion.
An unstable government for Iraq, and a hated government for us.
Fear – have you noticed that the rest of the world is talking about us the way we used to talk about Big Bad USSR?
Oil… oh wait. Prices haven’t really gone down, outside of the usual pre-election slump. Not to mention some of the largest one-day stock-market losses in history.
What. Have. We. Gained?
At this point, I can think of very little that’s good.
8. McCain wants to put in place a SPENDING FREEZE.
This is incredibly frightening.
He won’t give the details on exactly what he plans to do here. Why? Because, as usual, he’s speaking in platitudes. He repeatedly says “everything will be all right,” mocks Obama’s remarks that a scalpel is needed instead of a hatchet, and then won’t give actual details.
A spending freeze? Regardless of the necessity of the program? Regardless of whom it would affect?
Guess the students are out in the cold.
9. It does bring me to a very big point: McCain relies on emotionalism.
Everything will be all right.
I’ll fix it, don’t worry.
Soothe. Soothe. Soothe.
That is how he answers most of his questions. When he’s asked for specifics, he either responds with nice platitudes, with a bunny-trail answer that has nothing to do with the question, or with mockery. Remember his “Robin Hood” comment in the last debate? That was very funny and all – but it didn’t address the question.
Obama, on the other hand, gives actual answers. Here’s a very good example from the second debate. The question:
Since World War II, we have never been asked to sacrifice anything to help our country, except the blood of our heroic men and women. As president, what sacrifices — sacrifices will you ask every American to make to help restore the American dream and to get out of the economic morass that we’re now in?
McCain’s answer leapt into something very strange about spending cuts, entitlements, earmarks, and defense. That was not the question. I’m sure it made people feel good to hear, but it had nothing to do with what individual Americans will be asked to sacrifice.
Obama’s answer went specifically to personal spending habits, the individual’s effect on the economy, what we each must do in our homes to care for the environment, and that we must be willing to go without some comforts in order to help the country back on its feet.
That was an answer. A specific one, addressing the question. These responses are very typical for both of them.
10. Last point for now. This one really is personal. I’m sick and tired of seeing it happening.
Fellow Christians, Do. Not. ASSUME. That simply because someone invokes the name of Jesus Christ that he or she is a good person.
I know you want it to be that way.
I know the world would be peachy if everyone who claimed to be a Christian actually was.
The fact is, they’re not. You and I are supposed to be wary of false prophets who are really ravenous wolves (Matt. 7:15). Remember?
You haven’t been wary. You’ve jumped at the fact that McCain claims to be pro-life (which his voting record proves he is not) and that Palin claims to be a Christian (even though she shows no signs of it.) You have made the name of Christ look foolish – all for the sake of the emotional charge you get when you think you’re “on top of the issues.”
Please stop. Just stop.
There are more reasons to vote for Obama, many more. I’ve only listed a few. No, he is not a perfect candidate. There is no perfect candidate. My husband and I have prayed over this, wrestled over it, and at least we know we are voting with our eyes open.
Whichever way you go, I hope you do the same.
Obama’s redistribution quote in full.
Obama on economy:
“We measure the strength of our economy not by the number of billionaires we have or the profits of the Fortune 500, but by whether someone with a good idea can take a risk and start a new business, or whether the waitress who lives on tips can take a day off to look after a sick kid without losing her job – an economy that honors the dignity of work.”
MCCAIN ON ABORTION:link and link
Palin refuses to call bombers terrorist – as long as they’re not attacking the US Capitol and Pentagon
Obama and socialism: link.
More McCain Taxes: Link – a long, long report – and the shorter version, link.
Obama and dual citizenship:
“In other words, at the time of his birth, Barack Obama Jr. was both a U.S. citizen (by virtue of being born in Hawaii) and a citizen of the United Kingdom and Colonies (or the UKC) by virtue of being born to a father who was a citizen of the UKC. … Since Sen. Obama has neither renounced his U.S. citizenship nor sworn an oath of allegiance to Kenya, his Kenyan citizenship automatically expired on Aug. 4,1982.”
Why vote for Obama? Bush’s people recycled, taxes, health care, economy, energy, “The Surge,” and more: YouTube video: “Intelligent solutions, keeping Americans secure in a changing world.”
Share the wealth? That’s called The American Way.
Obama – distribution of wealth – link and link.
The conservative case for Obama.
Perfect sarcasm on McCain as president.
The myths of John McCain (Maverick, “lobbyist’s biggest enemy,” and more):
Why the last eight years suck.
On the hatred and bigotry of those claiming to be conservative:
“But even more important, when I see the hate-filled racists and right-wing yahoos braying at McCain and Palin rallies, when I hear people calling for Obama to be killed or lynched, and when I see the rabid hate mail circulating in email inboxes falsely labeling him as a secret Muslim, a terrorist, a Marxist and a black nationalist, I want to see the man resoundingly win this election.”
Jewish Alliance for Change link and some terrific Jewish comedians speak out on health care.
Don’t have time to watch? Then just read.
McCain voted for the bailout – but still calls Obama the socialist.
Reverse Robin Hood: Why McCain is wrong on health care.