As a Democrat and a pro-choice feminist, it’s time for me to explain why I support the president, and why other thoughtful Democrats should join me in doing so. I can’t tell you how many e-mails I’ve received from other Democrats either condemning me for not toeing the line, while others write who are genuinely curious, after all the hate-mongering and demonizing of Republicans and the president specifically, they hope I can ease their fears about what their inclination to vote for the president means about them.
The simple answer? It means you’re a confident liberal, a thoughtful person who realizes that game of party loyalty takes a back seat to the safety of your family and this nation. It also means you take the slogans of “choice” and “radical individualism”seriously. Isn’t it ironic that there’s nothing more radically individual these days than a liberal who doesn’t conform?
For me, Authentic Feminism is rooted in making it possible for people to make the choices that best suit them. If you have recognized the weakness of John Kerry, and know in your heart a vote for the president is the right thing to do, join me and do it! It can be done with a clear conscience as you embrace the radical individual inside you that attracted you to liberal causes in the first place.
Because some things simply transcend party lines, when in front of that Early Voting touch screen, I stood there as an American first, and voted for George W. Bush. This nation, our lives, and the lives our children require nothing less.
I explain to detractors and supporters alike that President Bush is the man who will keep this nation safest. The president and I hold dramatically divergent views on a number of social issues of importance to me, and yet for the 3,000 people who died on September 11th, abortion rights and same-sex civil unions mean absolutely nothing to them now. These issues, while important to me and ones on which I will continue to speak out about, are luxuries in the face of a world war where the enemy is a stateless savage who hunts children and cuts off people’s heads.
We have a responsibility to leave this nation as great as it is to the next generation. We all know, and must reflect on, the fact that the joy we have in our lives today is due to the sacrifice of hundreds of thousands of other Americans who died fighting for this country. Those soldiers did not die because they were promised 72 virgins in the afterlife, they fought not for themselves—they died in the most noble of American causes— so future generations—us—could live in freedom.
I do not take that action for granted, and I have learned that generosity of spirit and commitment to freedom is inherent in each of us, and a duty we cannot shirk.
Those of you with children have a more immediate concern, which is the literal safety of the light of your life. That little face looks up at you as you tuck her in, and sleeps gently knowing that Mommy and Daddy are there. That same face stares at you in the morning, with a heart full of hope, limited only by her imagination because you confront, for her, the harsh realities of every day. And these days it’s not just about making a living, it’s about the Beslan school massacre, it’s a new al-Qaida tape threatening Americans at home, it’s about war and mad savages who have specifically targeted children.
I voted for President Bush because having a Pacifist Internationalist in the White House will only embolden those who salivate at the sight of our blood. Having a man in the White House who stands for nothing will only excite Islamic Fascists who revel in torture and the cutting off of heads. I do not want a man in the White House who is so cold, when asked by a New York Times reporter how September 11th changed him, answers “It didn’t change me much at all.”
While I know a Bush presidency makes my work as a feminist more complicated and demanding, I will love and be grateful for every day I have the luxury of working on those issues. And frankly, it’s not necessarily a bad thing to have a president who encourages social activism on issues. Liberals make the mistake of thinking a Democrat president is indeed Daddy, who can be trusted in all things. Apathy soon follows that false comfort.
Bill Clinton showed us the decline of the Democratic Party into a gang spouting slogans to make women, gays and blacks feel Daddy was in the house, to our grave regret. What did we get? A sexual compulsive who put Monica Lewinsky on her knees instead of cutting bin Laden off at his.
Yes, there were plenty of Democrats, feminists, gays and blacks in the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and on those fateful flights. I’m sure you would agree that in their last moments their literal lives were more important to them than party affiliation.
I want a president who will be strongest making sure tomorrow comes, that this nation not just survives, but emerges from this war like the others we have fought, in a world that has been transformed for the better. I want a president who understands this is war, not a “nuisance.”
I know George Bush has made many in the world angry, and frankly, I am dismayed at the hard feelings. A recent poll of Europeans revealed their general belief that Bush has made the world a more dangerous place.
Upon hearing that, I remind myself of the time President Reagan increased arms production and installed more Pershing Missiles in Europe as we faced down the Soviet Union. President Reagan grappled with European polls, anger and resentment, all of which evaporated when the Soviet regime collapsed.
Yes, they hated Reagan, but he plodded on, never swayed by those polls or made doubtful by others’ hatred. His resolve freed Europe from the shadow of a bear which had no mercy and the blood of tens of millions on its paws. As a man of faith with a love of this country, Reagan stayed the course, and did what he knew had to be done. He was a leader, and I’m proud to say, one that only America could deliver.
Today, President Bush faces the same polls, the same anger, and the same resentment as he, too, recognizes and engages a rabid enemy of civilization, Islamo-Fascists. Europeans felt Reagan was leading them to Armageddon, as they now insist Bush is doing. We can’t know what it’s like for Europeans to see such a young nation doing so many things, but one thing Europe will find, again, is that while we may be wild, young and even cowboys on occasion, we have a pretty good track record of making the world a safer and better place.
With George W. Bush at the helm, this time will be no different.
I voted for President Bush because he has freed 50 million people, 25 million of which are women and girls. The feminist establishment, in a shameful exhibit of their hypocrisy, has ignored that fact. As a feminist, I thank the president with my vote, in solidarity with the millions of Afghan and Iraqi women who now, courtesy of the president and our astounding military, finally have hope, liberty and freedom.
Like all of our presidents, George W. Bush is quintessentially an American. He’s a Cowboy. A Texan. He will never be mistaken for a Frenchman. He’s a Yalie. He’s a man of faith, a husband and father. He’s a man who has fought with and overcome addiction. He’s a man of strength and character.
And while he is also wrong on some issues, if I have to work harder on social issues, I want it to be against a man whom I can admire, who I know, despite our disagreements, honors me in his work to keep this nation free and great.
For those of you who are Democrats and liberals—and I know through my years as a leader in left wing causes, including feminist and gay activism—we all have gone through a sort of conditioning that makes dissent or difference a frightening prospect. Republicans and conservatives have been decidedly demonized in your circle—perhaps by your own friends and family.
Let me tell you this--voting for the President does not change who you are or what you stand for. I stand for the classical liberal concepts of personal liberty and individualism, and have spent a great deal of my adult life working for those causes. I have found that “Choice” and “Individualism” are only slogans if you never act on them. Sometimes being yourself means straying from the expected, standing apart from your crowd.
November 2nd is a good a day to be a Democrat who’s an American first.