I grew up in a Republican milieu — both family and community. I gradually began to shift my views through new influences in my life — an exchange year as a post high school student to Britain which introduced me to such things as universal medical care, affordable housing, and other ‘socialistic’ benefits guaranteed to both citizens and people like myself passing through. College carried me further towards the conversions to being a Democrat and support of the things that people needed to live and thrive in a civilized democratic society.

I remember the stir that I caused at our local polling place in rural Connecticut when I asked to be able to split my vote between the parties. This entailed disconnecting a bar that otherwise guaranteed a slate of voters on one side or the other. The Anglos and well off would routinely vote Republican. Only the newer immigrant communities still retaining a nation pre-fix to American voted Democratic.

So where do we stand with the current competition between the parties. To me it looks as though we have one party that is against people (at least those with which it does not identity — THEM )– and the other that is pro all people, including those who are not yet officially American citizens. Do your own check list — mine that follows is, of course, not universal — there are some exceptions in each party:

Republicans look to be against:

*gays
*women (anti abortion and dubious about equal rights of other kinds)
*Muslims (or at least those against whom we are waging wars)
*universal medical care (let them die if they can’t afford it)
*universal housing (let them be homeless — we can’t afford any more low cost housing.
*universal old age care (we can’t afford that either)
*privacy and constitutional rights protecting speech and from religious intolerance and intimidation.
*taxes necessary to support our basic infrastructures (e.g. bridges and roads and other means of transportation) let alone the basics noted above.
etc.
etc.

Democrats are for doing the things that make possible the rights and benefits against which the Republicans are directing their fire. We are opposed to wars that are not necessary and which both drain our national treasury and offend the rest of the globe. We are care about human values (family ones included) that make life decent and bearable for those at home and as many over there as we can possible assist. We would prefer that our nation not be the cheapskate among those offering foreign aid and would want aid used for peaceful, not military purposes.
I will not try to spell out all the details, but we give a damn about all people, regardless of their gender, national origins, or differing religious and moral codes.

This election cycle will be interesting to watch. I hope those who care about people — all of them — win a sufficient surplus to defeat our Republican advocates of survival of the fittest only. May we rather evolve towards the well being of all of us — while there is still time to avoid a global holocaust.

“A war is just if there is no alternative, and the resort to arms is legitimate if they represent your last hope.” (Livy cited by Machiavelli)

Ed Kent 212-665-8535 (voice mail only) [blind copies]
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