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The Tentacle


March 12, 2013

What if you arenít absolutely right?

Pattee Brown

Politics is the new religion. Today, if you identify with any party, chances are your commitment to that fold is akin to a religious faith. This phenomenon has become so pervasive that otherwise reasonable people have become ideologues, incapable of speaking out against their party for fear of being ostracized.

 

There are a handful of people who are open to talking about political positions without condemning someone who doesn’t see things through a similar lens. But, it’s rare these days to speak with a “true believer” from either party that doesn’t involve them labeling, yelling, or waving their hand in revulsion because – God forbid – (excuse the pun) you don’t agree with their political opinion. Speaking out against the fold is blasphemy.  If you dare speak out in opposition of someone who has the Democrat or Republican seal of approval, you are cast out publicly as a non-believer; or in this case, a DINO or RINO, (Democrat or Republican In Name Only).

 

I have been labeled a liberal and a DINO on the same day. Democrats turn their nose up to me simply because I have a radio show on WFMD, a predominantly conservative radio station. Republicans accuse me of being a bleeding heart liberal, all without the benefit of even knowing my positions.

 

There is so much that could be learned if people weren’t so damned attached to their party position. If they could simply admit they might not be absolutely right. That just maybe, while their philosophies lean one way, their opinions might lean another depending on the issue. But that just doesn’t seem to happen when someone claims they are a proud Democrat or a proud Republican.

 

How about being a proud American? These party labels are utterly destroying our country and our governmental structure. In the same way that unions were once really useful and necessary, but have become the power holders they were originally designed to fight – the two political parties have become the power source that is dragging otherwise reasonable Americans down.

 

Recently a Republican, who was a guest on Frederick’s Forum, stated off the air that he would never re-elect Randy McClement as mayor of Frederick because he openly supported Ron Young in his run for state Senate. This guest was offended to the core that an elected official in the Republican Party backed a Democrat. That was the sole reason they wouldn’t support him this year. Not because he wasn’t a good mayor, not because he didn’t perform his duties satisfactorily, but because he backed a Democrat.

 

Patrick Allen has a reputation of being a DINO because he spoke out against a Democrat candidate who was running for office last year. He is reputed as not really being a Democrat because he openly speaks out against many things or people Democrats are in favor of.

 

Mr. Allen might have approached his attacks in a manner you do not approve of, and Randy McClement might be a less than effective mayor, but discarding them based on their dissention from the political party of their choice is total baloney. People have the right to express their opinions and identify themselves with any party without having the leaders of that party ostracize them for not agreeing with every letter written in the party’s doctrine. Instead, like the leaders of a new religion, these party preachers banish and admonish those who speak out against their party’s position and condemn them as a Judas Iscariot.

 

Politics, unlike religion, is not based on faith. You don’t have to “believe” with your heart and soul; you can see with your eyes and decide with your mind what is right and wrong regardless of the preaching of any one party.

 

For just a moment, imagine your party isn’t absolutely correct on an issue. Open your mind to a discussion with someone who doesn’t see the world as you do. If we do that, we might just figure out what is absolutely right for our country. That’s what we should all be fighting for.

 



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