Lately, as I listen to undecided voters speaking about how Senator McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin convinced them that they should vote McCain, I feel as though I am trapped by a magician in a magic show on the Twilight Zone.
There are voters who will vote party lines regardless of the candidate or the issues. Then there are voters who will not vote for a Black man to be the President of the United States, regardless of the issues or the position and qualifications of the candidate. These voters would publicly give politically correct reasons for not choosing Obama, but the bottom line would be race, plain and simple. I don’t really know what percentage of voters these are, but my feeling is that the both of the above groups of voters are more Republican than Democrat. Then there are those voters who only care that the country continues its movement away from the First Amendment and towards a more Fundamentalist Christian rule; guiding the country back to Biblical Science and away from evolution while limiting our freedoms regarding homosexuality, religious practice, and the right to choose. In this group too, the Republicans have an edge. Then there are those voters who want to see a woman President regardless of what she stands for or what her vision of this country is. And last, there is the group of voters who want more than anything for the country to be free of this war in Iraq, avoid any other unnecessary wars, and search for Osama Bin Laden where he has always been. This group is mostly Democratic but with a small number of Republicans who see the financial waste. These are not the groups who will win the election. These are the groups who are already, and have been from the beginning, reflected in the polls.
There are many young people not counted in the polls who will vote for a change, vote for an economy where they can find work and remain in this country, vote for a country where they will have an opportunity to find better or any health care for themselves and the children that they have or intend to have. Many of these voters are rational thinkers and realize that if the Republicans were going to make any of the changes that they are promising today, some of them would have been reflected over the past eight years. These voters are not listed in the undecided, they are decided, but just not counted, as in the many surprise primaries for Obama and Ron Paul, and they will show up at the polls and cast the vote that they have already decided upon.
The voters still to be convinced are the undecided. Some are hesitant about Barack Obama because they believe that given the situation that the country is in here and abroad, perhaps more foreign policy experience would be of value, perhaps just more experience on the ticket. If we are willing to face the elephant in the room (no pun intended), considering the issue of Obama’s race, and his very John F. Kennedy like vision for this country and its people – there is an underlying fear of assassination. Many people fear that if he isn’t too good to be true, as some would like us to believe, then he is too good, for those whose power depends on exploitation, to be allowed to serve the people of this country. In regards to the concern over experience, his running mate would either help satisfy the question of experience by adding that to the ticket, or, solidify the concern by choosing someone who is equally or less experienced that Obama. The same would be an issue if the fear was of assassination. The Vice President would have to share Obama’s vision of positive change for the majority of the people and at the same time satisfy the question of experience. In these two areas Joe Biden was the most appropriate choice to assuage the doubts and satisfy many of the undecided voters.
Those who would want to consider John McCain but remain undecided feeling that his lack of economic experience and overall foreign policy and national security experience, beyond having served in a war, needed to be considered. There is also the issue of mortality when the person running for President could be elected to his first term at the age of 72 with a history of Cancer and other health problems. So, here too, the Vice President that he would choose would have to be more experienced in dealing with the economy foreign affairs and national security. If we are going for a change in the running of the government, then it would have to be someone who did not vote with Bush 90% of the time but voted for the people.
The thing that utterly amazes me is that I am hearing people who say that they were undecided, now stating that after the choice of Sarah Palin as McCain’s Vice Presidential running mate, they have decided to vote for him. If the prior hesitation was that he needed more experience in areas that would help our economy or foreign policy, what does she bring to the table that turns him into the perfect President for our country? If it is a question of mortality, which in McCain’s case is much more viable a question than in Obama’s, what makes Sarah Palin the right candidate for the office of President of the United States? Is this country really ready to go from President GW Bush to President Sarah Palin? I don’t understand what, of the little that we know of her, could give people the sense that she would be so capable of leading the free world that without so much as a single debate or an unscripted reply to a single question, they were suddenly able to decide? Was the hesitation that McCain was not a woman? Was it that she is a mother who did not abandon her pregnant teenager? Was it that she takes great joy in killing defenseless animals for sport and supports the NRA? I am sure that McCain, if not an avid killer of animals, does at least support the NRA. So I am at a loss to understand the logic behind the choice of a woman that we have yet to really know anything about, swaying the undecided now, before any debates, before any open interviews – before she is even permitted to answer questions from reporters.
What does this say about what this country stands for in the twenty-first century? What does this say about this country and its place in the world? As of today, with what we know about Joseph Biden, and Sarah Palin, I am at a totally unable to understand how anyone could be in doubt as to who would better represent the nation and its people in the world today. I am not saying that there is something wrong with believing that Sarah Palin is the best candidate after knowing enough about her to be adequately informed as to her capabilities and her intentions as Vice President and President, should she have to step in and ascend to that Office. At least, then, credit must be given for a choice made based on being adequately informed, and on the world’s stage in which we live, we can stand up for a decision made, whether we like it or not, that engaged the mind and heart.
But the truth is that all of the e-mails that I am receiving that push the Republican ticket because of Sarah Palin, either begin with, “She has truly been sent by God to the Kingdom”, or, “Finally a woman who is just like us.” My first problem is with selling her as an average mother, many mothers with children who have disabilities do not have a choice between being there for their children, or working to support them. The mothers that I know, who have the choice as she does, would overwhelmingly choose to be a mother first to a child with special needs, even if it meant temporarily putting ambition aside. And as to God sending her to the Kingdom, I believe that God sends everything that happens and everyone who is born – to this kingdom. The question which remains to be answered, in my very humble opinion, is whether or not this package from on High will have been sent to our nation as a reward, or as a lesson that we have yet, been unwilling to learn.