Before he was impeached (man, that feels good to say), Trump tweeted out his rage about the “radical left,” which he apparently defines as all Democrats.
That phrase struck a chord with me. I’ve supported Democrats my whole life with the exception of my first presidential election when I think I voted for independent John Anderson because Ronald Reagan scared me and Jimmy Carter, well, 1979-1980 was a bleak time in America. Everyone was confused.
But I have never once thought of myself as “radical” or even as a “leftie.” I’m way too boring for either label. Most of my views, I like to think, are centrist or at the very least more or less mainstream Democrat.
For instance, I believe that:
- There should have been at least 112 more articles of impeachment against Trump, including one for “just being a jerk.”
- Politicians should obey the law and work for the people (clarification for my Republican friends: I mean the American people).
- We should help the poor, feed the hungry and house the homeless.
- Health care is a right. Everyone should have it, and not just (as Republicans like to say when they’re trying to sound like they give a shit) “access” to it. Everyone, of course, has “access” to health care. What they don’t have is the ability to “pay” for it. Also, I think it’s the height of wrong that, insurance or not, the vast majority of us are a single accident or illness from economic disaster. It’s as if the health-care industry really owns our savings. We’re just keeping it for them until something happens.
- The government shouldn’t kidnap immigrant children and if they do, the people responsible should be tried and convicted.
- Immigrants are the backbone of this country. It baffles me how anyone can be against immigration in a nation built entirely on and by immigrants. We’re all immigrants. Every one of us, including the people who hate immigrants.
- Deficits are to be avoided when possible and kept as small as necessary when needed.
- The only good martinis are gin martinis. Vodka martinis are a disgrace to the art of drinking. (I realize this has nothing to do with the subject matter today but I felt a need to say it.)
- Slavery was deeply wrong and the symbols and heroes of the Confederacy are not part of our “heritage” to be celebrated and perpetuated. They’re part of our dark past and should be left there.
- We can and should regulate guns.
- Mitch McConnell stealing Obama’s last SCOTUS pick will set a precedent that Republicans will come to regret.
- Teachers deserve massive pay increases and an apology from the GOP, which has demonized them for decades now because of the teacher unions.
- Women should choose, not men. Period. If men got pregnant, you can be damned sure they’d have that right. Damn sure.
- The rich do, in fact, own the government and tilt our entire economic system in their favor. All you have to do is compare wages for workers and CEOs over the past 40 years. We live in a plutocracy, which is a fancy word for a country where the wealthy are in charge and the rest of us get the scraps.
- Climate change is ridiculously, obviously and patently real. So real I can’t believe I even have to say this.
- Science is fact, not opinion. (Again, why does this need to be said?)
- The earth is round, vaccines are safe, we landed on the moon and Bigfoot (regrettably) doesn’t exist. (If Bigfoot did exist, you can be sure we’d have hunted or deforested his kind into extinction by now anyway.)
- Women should be paid the same as men.
- Oil and gas pipelines don’t belong underwater.
- Children deserve good schools.
- Everyone should have a minimum of four weeks vacation.
- Russia and North Korea are enemies not friends.
- The only true best Christmas movie is “Christmas Story.”
- White supremacists are the biggest domestic threat to this country and should be considered Public Enemy No. 1.
- Crash Davis (“Bull Durham”) was spot-on when he said he believed in “the soul… the small of a woman’s back… the hangin’ curveball… high fiber… good scotch… that the novels of Susan Sontag are self-indulgent overrated crap… I believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. I believe there ought to be a Constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf and the designated hitter. I believe in the sweet spot, opening your presents Christmas morning rather than Christmas Eve, and I believe in long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days.” (Exception: I don’t really think Oswald acted alone. I think the mob did it. Really. But then I watch a lot of History Channel, so … ) (And, yes, I omitted a few racy things from the quote. I blush easily.)
- Election Day should be a national holiday and people should pay a fine if they don’t vote. If they don’t vote twice in a row, they are subject to a stern lecture from my mother. And believe me, you don’t want that.
I like to think that most Americans – Democrats or Republicans – would agree with most of what I just wrote, with the clear exceptions of abortion and gun control. And maybe that gin thing.
But maybe I’m wrong. Maybe America has stayed the same and I’m the one who’s changed. Maybe I am, as Trump says, a “radical.”
You tell me. Please let me know in the comment section.
While you’re at it, add a few things that you believe in as well.
Maybe we’ll find some common ground.