It's that time in every four-year cycle where I don't even want to turn on the TV. All you hear is one politician or group bashing another, and I'm so sick of it, I could scream. I. Hate. Politics.
It is a little known fact that in my eclectic career, I have, actually, campaigned and been elected to public office. Yes, it was a small office. I spent four years as the clerk of a township in central Michigan. Why would arguably the most a-political person in the world become a politician? The answer is simple. Health insurance.
Now this was a long time ago, and there wasn't so much public outcry about "socialized medicine" or whatever you want to call it. The deal was, I had just finished grad school and hadn't landed a full-time job. So no benefits. My husband was still in grad school. No benefits. And we had two very young children. (3 and 4 when I took office.) The current clerk was retiring and my in-laws knew everyone in town. The clerk position was part time, but it DID come with family coverage on the township's health care plan.
So I ran. And I won. And I pretty much hated the political aspects of the job. Oh, I didn't mind the record-keeping, meeting with the public, even election oversight. I also wrote my first book in this time period, because I would be bored senseless at my desk some days. But the dirty-infighting politics? Hated every bloody minute of that part.
I was born with a hang up on fairness. I know life isn't fair, but I keep thinking it SHOULD be, at least those parts we, as human beings, can control. So I ALWAYS look at both sides of an argument, even if I don't want to. I also have an advanced degree in biology. Yes, that colors my perception of reality. No, I don't consider that a problem.
If you know me on Facebook or Twitter, you'll notice I don't often post about my beliefs. I'm on there to get to know people, not to piss off my brother or cousins, or readers. But this time comes around every 4 years, and I'd swear steam starts coming out my ears. So here it is. My personal philosophy. If you don't want to know, Have a great day and hop over to another site, right about now. No worries--I won't hold it against you, I promise.
#1: Science is not liberal. Science is science. Accept this, work it into your belief system and move on. Global climate change is not a theory, it's a fact. Evolution happened. And being gay is not a choice. Furthermore, that's not my opinion, it's science. All of these issues need to be reflected in our policies, before we don't have a planet any more, and no one has the freedom to pursue happiness.
#2: The United States of America is a great country, with a rich history of innovation and strength. We're not perfect. In education, standard of living, and yes, the health of our citizens, we're way down on the list internationally speaking. We need to fix this. We also need to stop being smug, self-satisfied jerks about it.
#3: I believe in freedom FROM religion as well as freedom of religion. That means no one else's religion gets to tell me or anyone else how to live their lives. "Because my god says so" is not a valid reason for laws or legislation regarding what I do with my body or who I marry. Period, no exceptions.
#4: We need to take care of each other, not look out for ourselves. The richest are getting richer. That's not "job-creation" that's exploitation, and the numbers are there to prove it. Math isn't liberal! So whether you're a janitor or a CEO, be kind and generous and thoughtful, to everyone. Yes, that means taking care of them when they're sick, regardless of wealth, sexual orientation, religion, weight or ethnic background. Be nice, even when it goes against your personal beliefs or isn't in your own financial best interests! Yes, this means I'm pro-choice, pro-gay-marriage, and pro-nationalized healthcare. I don't consider this liberal, I consider it right.
The worlds in my books represent reality as I see it. There are gay people. There are straight people. There are people who don't fall neatly into either category. There are nice people and there are jerks and most of us fall somewhere in between. There are poor people. Some of them are hard workers who just can't catch a break. Others are lazy. Rich or poor we're all human. There are people of different races, creeds, or nationalities who fall in love with each other. That's not meant to be a political statement, it's just the way life goes. Accept and move on... There, in a nutshell, is my outlook on politics and life. Now, back to your regularly scheduled programming...